D.C., Arlington team up to launch Capital Bikeshare
The District Department of Transportation and Arlington County have teamed up to launch a new bike-sharing system, the largest in the country.
The new Capital Bikeshare program will replace the District's SmartBike D.C.
It's set to launch in two weeks, with 1,100 new rental bikes.
"Every bike will keep one car off city roads, and how could that be bad?" asked Bethesda resident Otto Czifra.
Unlike SmartBike D.C., Capital Bikeshare spans the Potomac River, offering options to riders in D.C. and Arlington.
"We're starting here in the Crystal City, Pentagon City, Potomac Yard area," said Arlington County Board Chairman Jay Fisette. "We hope to expand it to the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor."
Membership costs $50 a year, $25 a month, or $5 a day. Daily users simply swipe a credit card at a station, an easy option for visitors and tourists.
"A lot of cars on the road but biking is nice, good exercise, it would kill two birds with one bike," said Carlos Gonzales, a Seven Corners resident.
The program is designed with short trips in mind. Extra fees apply to rides longer than 30 minutes.
"I'm not a biker but I would even try it during my lunch break," said D.C. resident Kym Dudley. "It's awesome."
You can pick up a bike, ride where you need to go, and leave the bike at any station.
"As opposed to keeping bike in possession all day, it's bike-sharing, so we're trying to keep bikes circulating in the system," said Crhis Eatough, the program manager for Bike Arlington.
The new bikes are more technologically advanced, and the stations are solar-powered.
"If it's cloudy, rainy, or snowy, batteries will power the stations up to week or two, depending on use of the station," said Alison cohen, program manager for Alta Bicycle Share.
Bikes and stations are now being assembled in a D.C. Warehouse, and will be up and running before the end of the month.
The goal is to eventually expand the program to Alexandria and Montgomery County.
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