BOISE, Idaho — Boiseans could soon see a lot more two-wheel transportation options downtown. Valley Regional Transit's new Vall-eBike electric bike program went live Wednesday with a fleet of 50 e-bikes.
Users can access the new electric-assisted bikes by downloading the Vall-eBike app from the Apple or Google Play stores. Bikes will be available for rental 24 hours a day. The first 30-minute ride is free -- enter the promo code 'ridevallebike' to take advantage.
“E-bikes are the thing these days. They became very popular during the pandemic as people were looking for something to do besides sit at home and watch Netflix," Valley Regional Transit Programs Director, Dave Fotsch told KTVB in June. "So, the real advantage of an e-bike is that every time you pedal, you get a boost from the electric motor. So, it allows you to travel further with less effort, less sweat in a hot summer day and here in Idaho."
The new program is replacing the Greenbike program, which began in April 2015 and was phased out in September 2020 because of impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, loss of title sponsors and equipment technology issues.
The Vall-eBike program is sponsored by Valley Regional Transit (VRT), Treasure Valley Clean Cities Coalition and the Idaho Advocates for Community Transportation.
The program was made possible with help from the Capital City Development Corporation, which provided $50,000 for the concept. Drop Mobility, the winner of VRT's bike-share proposal, is providing the 50 electric bicycles which will be available across the city.
“I wish we had more than 50 bikes. Our old system, we had 127. So, we're only going to be able to serve about half as many people, but as interest grows and as we generate revenue through the program, we will add more bikes," Fotsch told KTVB. "Our ultimate goal is 300 bikes next year."
While the eBikes are a fun way to get around town, VRT hopes the eBikes will make a real impact on the community for years to come.
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