Edinburg joins Valleywide BikeShare program active on UTRGV campuses

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The City of Edinburg has joined BikeShare Rio Grande Valley, a bike sharing program initiated by UTRGV students for a class project and now in use on the university’s Brownsville, Harlingen and Edinburg campuses, and in the cities of Brownsville and Harlingen. Edinburg will provide four more bike stations to accommodate those wanting an alternative to driving an automobile. (UTRGV Archive Photo by David Pike)

Texas Border Business

By Gail Fagan

RIO GRANDE VALLEY, TEXAS – FEB 6, 2017 – The City of Edinburg has joined BikeShare Rio Grande Valley, a bike sharing program in use at UTRGV’s Brownsville, Harlingen and Edinburg campuses and in the cities of Brownsville and Harlingen. 

The Edinburg City Council approved an agreement to join the program at its Jan. 3, 2017, meeting. The city will provide four more bike stations to accommodate those wanting an inexpensive, convenient and healthier travel alternative to an automobile. 

“With the addition of Edinburg, we will now have 21 stations with 105 bikes throughout the Rio Grande Valley,” said Rodney Gomez, UTRGV director of Parking and Transportation Services.

BikeShare, a program initiated by UTRGV students as a class project, is available to the public and is managed by Zagster, Inc., a national company that manages bike share services. Zagster supplies the stations and bikes, as well as maintenance and technical assistance.

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The bikes – all bright white cruisers equipped with lights, a reflector and bell – can be located via a free Zagster mobile phone app, or online at www.zagster.com/rgvbikeshare, which provides a code to unlock the bike. When the bike is returned to a bike station, the rental ends.

Users can pay an annual membership fee of $35 that allows unlimited trips under one hour to be free; a user would pay $2 per hour over the first hour and up to $10 per ride. Zagster also makes monthly and hourly memberships available.

Gomez said there are now 1,090 active members with a just under 4,000 trips provided since the bike service launched.

“Some of the heaviest uses of the bikes are around Casa Bella apartments in Brownsville and near the Student Unions on both the Brownsville and Edinburg campuses,” he said.

Gomez said users had a few issues with the Zagster app initially, which the company immediately resolved, and that a transportation survey planned this spring will incorporate questions to learn any other concerns or suggestions regarding the system. 

The four new Edinburg bike station locations include:

·         McIntyre Promenade.

·         Freddy Gonzalez Municipal Splash Park.

·         Cano Trail.

·         Jackson Street Trail.

Other BikeShare Rio Grande Valley bike stations can be found at http://bike.zagster.com/rgvbikeshare/.