By Carol McCracken (Post # 1,412)
The public is invited to attend a Bikeshare Public Forum on Wednesday, May 8th at the State of Maine Room, City Hall, Portland. It runs from 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm. It’s an opportunity to participate in a conversation about establishing a Bikeshare program in the city, share your thoughts and ask questions. The meeting is a component of a technical assistance grant the city received in February from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities program.
The EPA selected the City of Portland as one of five communities nationwide to receive technical assistance to explore the potential of establishing a Bikeshare program. Bikeshare is a program in which bichcles are made available for shared use. The program is desgned to provide affodable access to bicycles for short-distance trips in an urban area as an alternative to motorized public transit or private vehicles. Bikeshare programs help reduce congestion, noise and air pollution and support sustainable growth that encourages local economic development while safeguarding health and the environment.
As a part of the technical assistance provided, EPA staff and national experts will work with the city to explore the potential of establishing a bikeshare program in the community. Wednesdah’s meeting will be the public’s opportunity to learn more about the EPA program and opportunities for a bikeshare program. This meeting will be followed byh a workshop on Thursday with experts during which staff and invited participants will expore the feasibility of a bikeshare system. Afterwards, the city will seek to develop a business model for how such a program might be developed, managed and made financially sustainable.