Share | Posted Oct. 21, 2013 by Anthony Ongaro
It’s been an incredible 2013 season and as the leaves begin to change, we follow suit here at Nice Ride. As we grow near to our November 3rd system shut down, we’d like to reflect on some of our major strides forward this year. We’re excited to yet again be on the forefront of the bike share industry with the creation of our Greater Minnesota Initiative. We’re looking to help towns outside of the Twin Cities continue their missions to build a strong, mainstream bike culture and create bike places for everyone to enjoy. We have our title sponsor Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota to thank for making that possible. Here in the city, we brought our customer service home, right here to our Minneapolis headquarters to provide the highest quality of support for our members.
Our 2013 expansion brought stations that added connections to the Mississippi National River and Recreational Area, the Hiawatha Corridor, Lake Street destinations, and urban parks – bringing our total system to 170 stations across the Twin Cities. The ‘Hidden Wonders in the Minneapolis Parks’ project came to fruition as well, a project made possible by Allina Health and the Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board. It’s a complete mobile website dedicated to providing fun and interesting destinations within the Minneapolis Parks, entirely accessible by bike. You can check it out at parks.niceridemn.org.
We’re proud to provide the brand new Nice Ride Annual Report for 2013. It details our mission, our outreach efforts spanning 122 events, 90 led tours and more of what we’ve been up to this year.
In 2013, the bike sharing experiment became a successful bike sharing industry. As in any new industry, there will be a period of rapid growth and change. Nice Ride is playing an active role in shaping the industry, working with other cities to solve challenges and identify best practices. Some of our common goals include simplifying our user interfaces, creating products that fit the needs of more people and integrating with transit payment platforms.
Nice Ride purchases equipment and back-end software services through Public Bike System Company (PBSC), a non-profit corporation based in Montreal. There has been recent news about PBSC’s financial challenges, disputes with its software subcontractor and plans to restructure. Nice Ride values its relationship with PBSC and is optimistic that PBSC will restructure successfully. Nice Ride is also taking steps to continue to provide great service and keep pace with software developments. For this reason, Nice Ride provided to PBSC a notice of material breach of the 2010 Bike System Purchase Agreement between Nice Ride and PBSC. Nice Ride is working with PBSC to assure that the concerns raised in this notice are addressed in the pending PBSC restructuring. We are confident that 2014 will bring exciting developments in bike sharing and Nice Ride will continue to be a leader.
While it's not required, Nice Ride recommends that everyone wear a helmet. Keep a helmet at work or in your locker. Freewheel Bike offers 20% off Trek helmets to all Nice Ride Subscribers (bring your Nice Ride key or a receipt from any Nice Ride station). Pick-up a helmet at Freewheel's West Bank store or the Freewheel Midtown Bike Center