Bike Share "Could Take Some Time" And Might Need Public Loan, Leah Treat Says, But It's Worth It


So, "it all pays for itself" has turned into us spending $5.5 million we'll never see again. And since this is Portland, that $5.5 million will turn out to be $8 million.
"In our financial plan, we have made the assumption that we might need to cover the costs of a sponsorship being laid out over several years," Treat said. "It still hasn't been finalized or negotiated."

So that application for federal funds for the expansion contained a bald face lie that sponsorship funds were secure and available now? No mention of city funds covering and then recouping funds from sponsorships if and when they come in the application that I could see.

Kind of also goes against the general PR for this thing all along that none of this funding is coming from city coffers:…
1) Bike share is a tremendously stupid idea. It addresses a need that, to the extent it actually exists, is already served by companies who will be put out of business by bike share.

2) For this "last mile" garbage, I'd like to see a graph of the portions of the City of Portland where anyone has to walk a mile from their address to the nearest Tri-met stop.
I guess that's another point - how does a successful bike share program not exacerbate TriMet's whole "less riders/higher fares" death spiral?
That's going to be interesting to see, CC. I posed the same question in a piece in the Oregonian back in 2012. At least one study suggests bike share can eat in to ridership.…
I would think Kaiser Permanente could come up with better advertising than this doomed-to-fail venture.
Sorry, maybe I'm dumb --but can anyone explain this "last mile" concept to me?

I get off the Max and grab one of these things and ride it the "last mile" home...

Then what? I throw it away?
"Portland initially announced bike share would hit the streets in Spring 2013, but Alta's had unforeseen trouble corralling sponsorship money."

I'm pretty sure that Alta didn't even start fundraising until the Spring of 2013, and raising this much money takes a ton of time--the naming rights for the Rose Garden (Moda Center) took 15 years to sell. I'm pretty sure that 9 months of trying to secure sponsors for this a multi-million dollar investment isn't "trouble."
Bike sharing is designed to solve a series of transit issues. In cities, it has become a solution for the "first mile, last mile problem" by helping commuters travel the short distance between their homes or offices and public transportation.
Re: Last Mile

So once I get home, I should hang onto the bike and use it the next time I go to work? Wouldn't I be running up a large tab by keeping it overnight --or over the weekend?

I'm not trying to be petulant here --I'd really like to know, because this talking point doesn't make sense to me.

Yet it seems to make perfect sense to a whole lot of smart people, and I'd love it if one of them could explain it to me.
Personally, I'm really looking forward to having a flexible way to get around downtown. Some things I can do on foot downtown, but some are just a little too far to walk, and the bus network doesn't quite work for them.

I think bike share downtown will let me ride the bus there more often - right now I always ride my own bike instead.
Considering the fact that DCs Bikeshare program (run by Alta) is in the black and considering the insane amount of subsidies we give to motor vehicles (which has many negative consequences), I think Portland should embrace and fully fund bike share as a one more better alternative in our list transportation options.

If people are truly concerned about transportation subsidies then they should first target their wrath at costly, deadly automobile subsidies which are in several orders of magnitude higher than modest, efficient and clean bike share.
Euphonius: It wouldn't literally take you to your home, but ideally there would be a docking station somewhere very near your home. Depending on where you live, that probably won't be the case early on, when most stations are anticipated in and around the Center City. But the city has promised to make bike share an equitable affair as it grows, so the expectation is that stations will crop up in some of the less-tony neighborhoods farther from downtown. That should be the goal, at least.

The city's already applied for grant money from the state to start an expansion (though there is some speculation PBOT might have been less than honest about it's sponsorship arrangement when applying, as Baby Gorilla has pointed out).
So, the "last mile" solution for now is that when I get home on the bike, I throw it in the back of my gas guzzler, drive it to a docking station, and drive home. Sounds reasonable.
Tourists won't put these on the front of buses, taking the two precious spaces that bike/bus commuters need, will they? No? That's a relief.
Aren't the docking stations located at bus stops? "Last mile" only makes sense if the docking station is closer to my house than the Trimet stop is.

And Portland must have 10,000 bus stops! So doesn't it seem that the only way "last mile" is any practical help for commuters is if there are more docking stations than bus stops?
Ah, more tax dollars spent by the entire Portland Metro region to benefit the few close-in and tourists.
Kinda like streetcars and the tram.
Euponius, no goddamnit! You ride it the "last mile" then once you get home you don a kilt and pick up a pair of bagpipes and cruise around your neighborhood! Do I have to explain everything to you people? Midwest Vandy: "Ideally there would be a "docking station" somewhere very near your home"...bahahhaaha..I can see meth heads and low life thieves with their eyes sparkling at this veritable bounty!
Poor jokes aside this is stupid and will not be a success at least not in the way some of you hope. Assuming it ever actually gets implemented. There are FAR better things to spend city money on. Try improving roads in SE Portland. I don't even live there but it's a joke. Just stop with some of this silliness
"The PBOT director is a daily bicycle commuter, but said she'll use bike share to complete midday errands rather than her bike."

This is complete and utter bullshit. Dirk, do you mind being completely lied to, or is it on a case by case basis?
Problem with this is that the Bike People already have bikes, and either very expensive ones or junky fixies, and they don't need it.

MichelleP might have a point - someone who needs to run an errand in another part of downtown too far to get to walking during a work break. I don't know if it can support the project, though.

One OTHER use for a bikeshare is in areas outside the central city - MAX stop to workplace. But those areas are outside the "cool zone" of downtown, the Pearl, and inner NE/SE, so they won't fly with bikeys or a City Council that think Portland stops at Interstate or 60th Avenue.
One million for sidewalks in Outer SE Portland and 4 million for bike share in the Pearl and on Hawthorne. Oh, such equity, Ms. Treat.