The City of Wichita will have a new transportation system starting today. BikeShareICT will make 100 cruiser bikes available on-demand from 19 stations throughout downtown Wichita.
BikeShareICT leverages Zagster, a provider of city bike share programs around the country, to supply the bikes, bike stations, and the app that gives users access. Annual memberships are $30. For college students, annual memberships are $20. Riders can also borrow bikes for $3 per hour.
“We want to ensure everyone has access to safe and active transportation, and we want to revitalize our downtown to better attract and retain young talent, and bike-sharing is a powerful tool towards both ends,” Wichita Mayor Jeff Longwell said. “Now is the perfect time to begin bike-sharing in Wichita, and Zagster is a perfect partner to help us achieve our goals.”
The program is sponsored by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas (BCBSKS) and the Knight Foundation Fund through the Wichita Community Foundation. BCBSKS, the state's largest health insurer, is making an initial contribution of $194,000 to provide bikes and marketing support for the first year of the program.
"Throughout our 75-year history, we've made helping Kansans lead healthier lives one of our top priorities," Andrew C. Corbin, BCBSKS president/CEO, said. "I commend Mayor Longwell, those at Health ICT and all those involved for making it happen. BCBSKS is proud to serve as primary sponsor for BikeShareICT and we look forward to helping grow the program.”
Becky Tuttle, Project Manager for Health ICT and Chair of the Health & Wellness Coalition of Wichita, credits the collaborative funding partnership with making this new program possible.
“Health ICT and the Health & Wellness Coalition of Wichita are extremely grateful for the generous contribution from BCBSKS and the Knight Foundation Fund at the Wichita Community Foundation to launch BikeShareICT,” Tuttle said. “Without this fantastic financial support, and the technical assistance from the City of Wichita, this amazing amenity in our community would not be coming to fruition. BikeShareICT will allow another safe form of active transportation in our community and we are excited to be a part of this opportunity to make our community healthier.”