Organizers of a plan to create a bike-sharing network in Honolulu have identified four possible vendors and are looking to select one by late fall. As HPR’s Molly Solomon reports, they’re now turning to the public for feedback.
Ben Trevino leads me through a showroom that displays the four different Bikeshare models. He’s considering them for Hawai‘i’s first bicycle-sharing program. In front of us is a sleek grey bike, that’s attached to a stand. This one, called Decobike, is already a popular choice in Miami. The frame was designed to withstand humid temperatures and beach environments.
Trevino is the President and COO of Bikeshare Hawai‘i, the nonprofit in charge of rolling out the system. They’re holding a series of open houses to showcase bicycle options. He says different models are currently being used in cities across the country, but they all work roughly the same way. You pick up a bike at one docking station, ride it and then lock it up at another. “We’re only going to be able to pick one of these bikes and each of them has different features,” said Trevino. “We can find out what people’s preferences are to understand what feels right to people here and what’s going to be the right solution for Honolulu and for Hawai‘i.”
Hawai‘i’s system will include 2,000 bikes at 200 stations between Chinatown and Waikīkī. Trevino says when it comes to Bikeshare, the more density the better. “It needs to be convenient or it doesn’t make sense. Our plan is to have the stations no farther than 900 feet apart,” said Trevino. “You should always be within walking distance of another station.”
And while you will need a credit card to rent the bikes, Trevino says the rates will be affordable. Payment options are flexible, you can purchase by the minute or pay for a monthly membership, about $15 to $25. “What we’re trying to do with our system is have a low buy in of about 5 to 7 dollars, so it’s easy to try it out,” said Trevino. “And at the same time provide something that’s cost effective if you’re going to ride it a lot.”
Bikeshare Hawai‘i will spend the next few months sorting through public comments, and plans to announce the winning model in late October.
The next open house will be on Wednesday, August 26 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the parking lot of the Honolulu Design Center. Bikeshare Hawai‘i expects to launch in May 2016.