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Mayor Menino Signs First-Ever Bike Share Contract Launching Hubway in Boston

April 21st 2011

Alta Bicycle Share will launch new system this summer with 61 stations and 600 bicycles citywide

Boston, MA -

Today, surrounded by cycling advocates as well as city and state officials, Mayor Thomas M. Menino signed a contract with Alta Bicycle Share to bring a cutting-edge bike share system to the City of Boston, one of the first in the country. Dubbed Hubway specifically for the region, the installation of the system will begin soon with 61 stations located across the entire city, incorporating over 600 bicycles. The official opening of the system is scheduled for this summer and locations will include Kenmore Square, Roxbury, the South End, the Longwood Medical area, Allston, Brighton, the Back Bay and more. Hubway is a program under Mayor Menino's nationally recognized Boston Bikes Program that he launched to make Boston one of the world's premiere cycling cities.

"Over the past four years, we have taken great strides toward making Boston a city that welcomes and encourages bicycling but this innovative bike share system may be the most significant step yet," Mayor Menino said. "We have worked tirelessly to build the infrastructure necessary to support such a system and we are confident that there is no better time to make Hubway a reality. We have had the goal of going from worst to first, and with Hubway we're nearly there. I want to thank Senators John Kerry and Scott Brown and Congressmen Michael Capuano and Stephen Lynch for their dedicated hard work in helping to secure crucial grant funding to make such an important project possible."

"Biking is becoming a bigger part of urban transportation every day, and Boston has led the way incorporating bikes into the city," Senator Kerry said. "Now with this new bike share program, we're on track to remain one of the most bike-friendly cities in the nation. I'm glad that I had the chance to work with Tom Menino to bring this important program to Boston."

Although Hubway will be installed, maintained and operated by Alta Bicycle Share of Portland, Oregon, the equipment is a state-of-the-art, third generation, solar powered automated system developed by Public Bike System Company who runs the BIXI bike share program in Montreal. Hubway will feature "swipe card" payments and will cost about $5 per day with free trips that are 30 minutes or less, and $85 annual memberships. Similar systems are located in Washington D.C., Montreal, London and Melbourne. The technology allows users to rent bikes from one station and return them at another across the city. Typically, there will be about 10 bikes available at each station.

"Alta Bicycle Share and our partners Public Bike System Company and Arnold Worldwide, are humbled and elated to help Boston and the metropolitan region continue to be a leader in innovation, technology and sustainability with the launch of Hubway," Alison Cohen, President of Alta Bicycle Share, said. "With a great public transit system, burgeoning bicycle infrastructure and an amazing team of communities, Hubway will revolutionize the way people in Boston and surrounding communities get around."

The planning for Hubway began in 2008 and would not have been successful without substantial assistance from the Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC), the FTA, Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) and the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT). Hubway is specifically designed to be fully regional and at full size, the system could reach as many as 5,000 bikes across Cambridge, Brookline and Somerville.

"Bike Share will transform the region," said Marc Draisen, Executive Director of the Metropolitan Area Planning Council. "It's a completely new part of our transportation network, giving people a green and healthy way to get around, closing gaps in the MBTA, and providing the first and last mile connection that often prevents people from using transit. We're excited to see Boston, Cambridge, Brookline, and Somerville working together to make Bike Share happen."

"Through our 'GreenDOT' policy initiative and under the leadership of Governor Patrick and Lieutenant Governor Murray, MassDOT has demonstrated a strong commitment to healthy transportation options as essential to creating livable communities. This bike share system supports that commitment," said MassDOT Secretary and CEO Jeffrey Mullan.

Hubway is completely funded by grants totaling $4.5 million including $3 million from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), $450,000 from the Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) and $250,000 from the Metropolitan Planning Organization's Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) grant program.

"Awarding this grant for this project is particularly meaningful as we celebrate Earth Day," said FTA Deputy Administrator Therese McMillan, who was in Boston today to announce the grant. "Supplementing transit with bike sharing means a healthier and cleaner way to get around, while at the same time combating record gas prices and easing congestion."

In addition to the grant funding, station sponsorships and revenue through a separate advertising program, as well as income generated by memberships and one time payments by individual users are expected to cover the annual operating costs for Hubway. The Boston Transportation Department (BTD) will oversee and work with Alta Bicycle Share to ensure they meet the individual requirements of the contract.

Currently, 11 sponsorships have been secured for Hubway worth $1.5 million over three years including over $600,000 from New Balance, and Boston Bikes will continually seek more. As part of its sponsorship, New Balance retains naming rights of the system which is expected to become New Balance Hubway. Sponsors will be assigned stations where their logos will appear, they include:

  1. - Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

  2. - Northeastern University

  3. - Brigham and Women's Hospital

  4. - Children's Hospital

  5. - Procter & Gamble Gillette

  6. - Harvard University

  7. - Boston Properties

  8. - Fallon Company/Fan Pier

  9. - Colleges of the Fenway

  10. - Equity Offices

  11. - City Sports

"As a Boston-based company with associates who are eager to enjoy this new bike-share program, we are thrilled to partner with Mayor Menino and the City to make Boston a first class cycling city," said Matt LeBretton, Director of Public Affairs for New Balance. "New Balance's sponsorship of Hubway reflects and reinforces our long-standing focus on encouraging healthy lifestyles for Boston residents and visitors."