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Boulder BCycle prepares to expand fleet of e-bikes to meet growing user demand

by Annie Mehl | Nov 04, 2021

Sarah Yanowitz, right, heads up the path on a new electric BCycle during the Boulder BCycle launch party on Wednesday. (Cliff Grassmick/Staff Photographer)

As more people in Boulder hop on e-bikes as an easy and accessible mode of transportation, Boulder BCycle is determined to keep up with the growing demand and is preparing to expand its fleet.

BCycle General Manager Kevin Crouse leads the group out to the bike path during the Boulder BCycle launch party on Wednesday. (Cliff Grassmick/Staff Photographer)

By the end of the year, BCycle will have 300 e-bikes for people to rent and ride in Boulder and will expand its docking stations in East Boulder, said Sara Michaels, marketing and business development specialist with BCycle.

“We put 100 e-bikes into our system in March of 2021,” Michaels said. “We had more rides in less than six months than we had in the entire year prior.”

BCycle had a launch party Wednesday evening for its growing fleet of e-bikes and discussed its plans for the future to help people away from driving and toward an all-electric, sustainable form of transportation. The company recently relocated to a larger space in Boulder to allow for more storage as it multiplies its fleet and charging stations. About 50 people attended the event.

“We wanted to follow suit in the popularity of not showing up to work sweaty because you have the pedal-assist in your bike,” Michaels said. “It saves you from spending all this money on gasoline, polluting our planet every day and it’s healthy. It’s been proven that riding a bike makes you happy.”

BCycle has worked with the city for the past decade to offer bike sharing but previously offered regular pedal bikes rather than all-electric pedal-assist bikes. Nonprofit Boulder Bike Sharing formally operated the city’s bike share program in partnership with BCycle.

The bikes are available throughout the city and the cost for passes varies depending on whether someone wants a day pass versus a monthlong pass, Michaels said. Pass information can be found at boulder.bcycle.com/nav-2020/start-riding.

As part of the partnership with BCycle and Lime — which offer e-scooters in the city — 15 cents from every e-bike or scooter rental goes back to the city.

“Those funds go back to the city to pay for whatever costs there are with the program,” said Boulder Senior Transportation Planner David “DK” Kemp. “We could use most of those funds for safety education outreach, infrastructure, social equity programs and staff costs from time working on the project.”

Morgan Ramaker, executive director of BCycle, said the company is on track to hit 250,000 e-bike trips this year in Boulder — more than double any other year.

“I’m just really excited to have everyone see the shift that’s happening to the e-bikes,” she said. “They are starting to get more and more plentiful out in the field.

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