If you’ve been seeing a lot of brightly-colored bikes rolling around town, then you are most likely witnessing people using LimeBike, a new bike sharing program that recently launched in Reno-Sparks during National Bike to Work Week. Around a thousand LimeBikes were placed around the area in early May, allowing people to use their smartphone to rent and grab a bike at any of its dock-less locations.
LimeBike was founded in June 2017 by a team of people committed to reducing/eliminating our carbon footprint by figuring out a way to allow others to get around affordably and more conveniently using smart technology. Its fleet of LimeBikes are single-speed cruisers with brakes on the handlebars and best used at casual speeds on solid ground.
Using your smartphone, you can find a LimeBike in your area, unlock it, and ride away. Then when you’re done using it, you re-lock it by hooking a mechanism through the back tire, your ride is done, and your account is charged. It costs one dollar to use a LimeBike per every half-hour and discounts are offered for seniors, students, and low-income residents.
A solar panel in the basket powers a LimeBike and the locking mechanism in the back plus tracking devices help prevent theft. LimeBike is solely responsible for the maintenance and operation of the program and local employees are in the area to service the bikes or handle customer issues. Since all bikes are 3G and GPS-enabled, riders can easily find a bike, unlock it with their phone and go, locking it back up in a bike rack or area between a pedestrian sidewalk and street curb. What makes LimeBike different from the rest is that you can leave the bike pretty much anywhere you want without having to worry about dropping it off at a specific location.
There are currently more than 50 cities that carry LimeBikes in 15 states and even a few major European cities have the popular bright green dock-less bikes. The company has received rave reviews since its launch and many LimeBikes have been seen being used around the Sparks Marina. Five local entities in Northern Nevada including Washoe County, Reno-Sparks Indian Colony, City of Sparks, City of Reno, and University of Nevada, Reno chose LimeBike through a competitive process for a bikeshare vendor, looking for a way to better serve Truckee Meadows residents and guests.
Sparks Mayor Geno Martini hopes that implementing LimeBike will encourage local residents to get outdoors and enjoy many of the events in the area. “Bringing LimeBike into the region has been a great collaborative effort, and we look forward to a new transportation option that also improves urban sustainability,” he says.
After the yearlong pilot program of LimeBike, the five local government entities in Truckee Meadows will assess the benefits of the dock-less bikeshare program and areas where it can improve its services.
Good bike etiquette helps keep the program running smoothly; for more information about how to use LimeBike, visit www.limebike.com.