BCycle has taken measures to ease concerns about sharing bikes during the COVID-19 era by regularly sanitizing bikes and bike stations, "as a way to reassure riders that we were taking further precautions to keep our community safe," Britz said.
It was a year ago that BCycle made Madison the first of the 37 cities it serves to go all electric. BCycle users embraced the new bikes, racking up 231,000 rides in 2019, compared with 103,000 in 2018, and adding 7,000 riders for a total of 17,000.
So far this year, the company reports nearly a threefold increase in trips compared with last year. Britz said the company plans to meet the growing demand by adding 50 to 100 new bikes to its current fleet of nearly 300 by the end of the season.
BCycle is also adding bike stations, which now number 46. The company recently added a new facility at the Marling Apartments in the booming East Washington Avenue corridor, and reinstalled a station on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard that had been removed because of construction. The station at Memorial Union on the UW campus is being expanded.
Britz said other stations are in the planning stages.
Nationally, the company plans to add Santa Barbara, California, to its list of cities by the end of the year.