BBSP Blog: Philly’s New “Wheels to Work” Program

 

This is a repost of an orinigal blog written by Kiran Herbert, Local Programs Writer and Content Manager at the Better Bike Share Partnership (BBSP) and published on the BBSP Blog on 10/06/21.

Indego bike share launched a four-week training course that combines workforce development with learning about bicycling. Keep reading to learn more about this new program!  

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Indego Expansion Update

Reflecting on Indego’s commitment to reaching new neighborhoods and more Black and Brown communities in our 2021 system expansion.

In December 2020, we announced plans for a 2021 expansion, focusing on growing Indego’s footprint in parts of West and South Philadelphia. Let’s take a closer look at our progress and learn more about growth projections for the rest of the year. 

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Program Spotlight: Wayfinding Signage & Digital Ride Guides

Communities across Philadelphia are rich with history. Much of the development within our neighborhoods was led by everyday residents whose stories often aren’t written or spoken about, even though their impact is still felt today. Many of the stories associated with these people and places exist in documents of the past, the archives of city council, and the hearts and minds of those who witnessed these communities transform. As time moves forward, keeping track of and celebrating these memories becomes more and more important to preserve them.

The Indego team recently installed wayfinding signage to five stations in Mantua, Point Breeze, and Strawberry Mansion aimed at honoring the legacy of these neighborhoods, celebrating the unique resources they have to offer, engaging community members, and making our bike share system easier and more welcoming to use. We’re also excited to introduce the first phase of a new section of our website called Neighborhood Ride Guides, which are dedicated to these same intentions. Keep reading to discover more about these two projects and how to access them!

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Introducing the New Indego Community Engagement Manager

As Indego prepares for a large system expansion, the Bike Transit team has created a new position to further strengthen the bridge between Indego and the existing and future communities where Indego serves. We are ecstatic to introduce you to Charolyn, Indego’s new Community Engagement Manager. Keep reading to learn more about Charolyn’s background in community engagement and her goals for the upcoming expansion!  

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Indego is Expanding!

In June, the City of Philadelphia announced that Bicycle Transit Systems had been awarded a ten-year concessionaire contract to continue operating the Indego bike share system.

Bicycle Transit Systems is a Philadelphia based company which has been responsible for building and operating the Indego bike share program over the past five years. Bicycle Transit Systems has helped Indego expand from 60 stations and 600 bicycles to more than 140 stations and 1,400 bicycles, including the introduction of electric bikes in 2019. Since launch, more than four million rides have been taken on Indego.

Over the past five years, Bicycle Transit Systems has worked closely with the City of Philadelphia as a ‘living laboratory’ for the Better Bike Share Partnership (BBSP), a national initiative focused on creating equity in bike share and shared micro-mobility. This work is poised to continue and expand alongside the Indego program.   

“Bicycle Transit Systems has proven that they share the City’s values for mobility, sustainability, and equity, and we’re thrilled that they will continue operating and growing Indego for the next ten years,” said Deputy Managing Director for Transportation Mike Carroll of the Office of Transportation, Infrastructure, and Sustainability, which manages the Indego program for the City. “We thank all of our partners, including members of City Council, whose approval of the new contract was crucial to moving forward.”

“As title sponsor since its inception, Independence is proud to continue our partnership with Indego − one of the most accessible, equitable, and inclusive bike share programs in America,” said Daniel J. Hilferty, Independence Blue Cross President and CEO. “Indego has given tens of thousands of people access to a healthy and fun way to travel through the city. The program’s expansion under Bicycle Transit Systems will allow more people to take advantage of this fantastic resource.”

The new contract, which starts in January, was approved by City Council based on the strength of Bicycle Transit Systems’ application and their excellent track record of running Indego. In this blog, Indego will share more details about the expansion and how to get involved!

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Help Shape the Future of Bike Share: Become an Indego Expansion Liaison

The Indego team is beginning to plan for system expansion in 2021, with plans to more than double in size by 2025. To help in this effort Indego is seeking support from key community members to serve as Indego Expansion Liaisons for the upcoming expansion of the program. 

Indego Expansion Liaisons will serve as advisers to help engage West Philadelphia (ex. Walnut Hill, Garden Court, Cedar Park, Mill Creek) and parts of South Philadelphia (ex. Point Breeze, Gray’s Ferry, Mifflin Square). Liaisons will help create a space for community voices to be heard and introduce bike share as an equitable, high quality, reliable, affordable, and healthy transportation option. 

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