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  • Tour Buffalo Bayou on a BCycle

    by Christin Dietze | May 17,2017

    Four of Houston BCycle's busiest stations surround Buffalo Bayou Park, the 160-acre green space with hike and bike trails in the shadows of the Houston skyline. With several public art pieces, beautiful native wildflowers, and waterfront bike trails, Buffalo Bayou Park is a wonderful space to explore on two wheels. Check out a BCycle from Sabine Bridge, Lost Lake, Jackson Hill or Spotts Park and enjoy a 5 mile loop around the Shepherd to Sabine stretch of Buffalo Bayou. You can even take a DIY Bike Tour now that Buffalo Bayou Partnership has rolled out a free mobile app with a guide to the park and audio tours along the way. 

    18238566_1458770920864925_3732403405396930143_o ExploreBuffaloBayou
    BBP Bike Map

    In a partnership with Houston Public Media, BBP's audio tours provide information on the park as well as Houston history and fun facts at several stops along the bayou. In less than an hour you can cover all the stops along the way, or if you'd like to break your trip up, just dock your BCycle at the brand new Lost Lake station and grab a snack or drink at The Kitchen at The Dunlavy

    BBP App copy

    Things you will see along the way:


    WorthamFountain

    The Gus S. Wortham Memorial Fountain, created in 1978, is the work of Houston architect and long-time Rice University professor William T. Cannady. Inspired by a similar fountain in Australia, it consists of a central bronze shaft sprouting multiple bronze sprinkler pipes coated in lacquer which create a dandelion-like spherical spray of water. (Source http://www.houstontx.gov/)

    PoliceMemorial

    The Houston Police Officer Memorial is a public recognition of the sacrifices made by police officers as they carry out their duties and, in particular, those who have died in the line of duty. It is the location for an annual procession and wreath-laying ceremony honoring them. It is laid out in the form of a 120’ by 120’ Greek cross with a stepped pyramid in the middle. A reflecting pool is surrounded by pink granite slabs incised with the names of over one hundred fallen police officers. (Source http://www.houstontx.gov/)

    WaughBatBridge2
     
    “The Waugh Bridge Bat Colony” consists of 250,000 Mexican free-tailed bats that emerge nightly to stretch their wings and feed on area insects. Unlike other Texas bat colonies that opt for warmer climates by migrating southward during winter months, The Waugh Bridge Bat Colony remains in Houston throughout the year. This is the second largest bat colony in Texas, behind Austin's Congress Avenue Bridge Colony. (Source http://www.houstontx.gov/)

    ToleranceStatues

    Created by internationally-renowned Spanish sculptorJaume Plensa, “Tolerance” is a grouping of sculptures sited in Buffalo Bayou Park at the intersection of Allen Parkway and Montrose Boulevard. The seven human figures represent the seven continents, and are made of silvery aluminum. Their framework consists of alphabetic symbols from languages around the world, reflecting the artist’s belief that, whatever culture we live in and whichever language we think in, our lives are similar. At night, the sculptures are lit from within. They rest on rough-cut granite pedestals that were brought in from the artist's home country, Spain. (Source http://www.houstontx.gov/)


    JacksonHillBridge3

    Jackson Hill Pedestrian Bridge connects the Jackson Hill BCycle Station with Buffalo Bayou Park

    On top of these you'll pass by Eleanor Tinsley Garden, Tapley Tributary and Lost Lake on the Shepherd to Sabine stretch of Buffalo Bayou Park. Venture further east into downtown and discover more along the bike paths that run all the way to Allen's Landing, the original port of Houston. In the next several years, Buffalo Bayou Partnership will add even more hike and bike trails, connecting all the way to the Port of Houston Turning Basin. This will create 20 miles of connected bike paths for cyclists to enjoy, and we'll be installing more BCycle stations along the way.



  • Lost Lake Luau Ribbon Cutting and Celebration

    by Christin Dietze | May 08,2017


    HOUSTON — On May 10th, 2017, at 6:30 p.m., Houston Bike Share will celebrate four new Houston BCycle stations with a ribbon cutting at the new Lost Lake Station at Dunlavy and Allen Parkway with Council Member Karla Cisneros, City of Houston's Planning & Development Department, and Friends of Woodland Park. Following the ribbon cutting, a poolside luau reception will be held at The Villas at River Oaks apartment complex, juts steps away from the Lost Lake station. The four new BCycle stations are located at Guadalupe Plaza Park, Woodland Park, Main & Wichita and Lost Lake. This celebration comes just as the Houston BCycle program reaches its 5th birthday. BCycle first came to Houston in May 2012 and has grown to a network of 38 stations with 300 bikes available for short-term rentals. In 2016, 113,252 trips were taken on Houston BCycles. So far in 2017, 53,822 trips have been taken on Houston BCycle, a 33% increase over last year.

    Houston BCycle Luau

    These four new stations come at the start of a major expansion of the Houston BCycle network, funded by a Federal Highway Administration grant, sponsored by the City’s Planning and Development Department. Houston Bike Share is responsible for $880,000 in local match funding. The new Main & Wichita station match funding was provided by the Texas Medical Center, Guadalupe Plaza Park was funded by Council Member Karla Cisneros, Woodland Park funding came from The Friends of Woodland Park, and after a tremendous amount of bike share use around Buffalo Bayou Park, Houston Bike Share is providing the funding for the new 22 dock Lost Lake Station, offering more bikes with access to the park.

    Carter Stern, executive director of Houston Bike Share, commented on the expansion, “This is the first big chunk of stations we’re adding as part of our expansion and our plan is to add four to six new stations each month through end of year. We are especially thankful for the funding provided by Texas Medical Center, Council Member Cisneros and Friends of Woodland Park, and appreciate the critical support from the City Planning and Development Department with the implementation our plans. Houston Bike Share is excited to bring BCycle to more neighborhoods in Houston and to continue to grow our network and our ridership.”

    Join Houston BCycle for the Lost Lake Luau ribbon cutting and celebration May 10th at 6:30pm! More event information here.

    LOST LAKE LUAU


    Lost Lake Luau Map

  • Rider Profile: Rosa Guerrero

    by Christin Dietze | Apr 27,2017

    Houston BCycle serves a lot of different purposes for a lot of different people. Some riders just happen upon a station and decide a bike ride could be fun, others use our bikes every day for their commute to work. This month we met a rider who learned how to ride a bike using Houston BCycle and now she's riding from Houston to Austin in her first BP MS150!

    Meet Rosa

    Rosa Guerrero

    Up until last summer, Rosa didn't know how to ride a bike. When a friend convinced her to ride caboose on a tandem bike in a social ride, she got a feel for the sense of freedom that cycling provides and her world was changed.  Without a bike of her own, Rosa started renting BCycles to learn how to ride and get comfortable being on a bike. Standing at only 4'11", Rosa always drops the BCycle seat down as low as it can go before taking off on her usual route that starts at the Market Square Park station and follows the bike trails around Buffalo Bayou Park. In the last year, she's met several other cyclists who have contributed to her love for the hobby. Between participating in social rides and making kind new friends who helped her eventually find a bike of her own, she has completely fallen for Houston's cycling community.

    Rosa Guerrero Profile

    When asked how Houston BCycle helped her, Rosa responded, "Being in recovery from alcohol for over 3 years, I always need to set goals and focus on achieving them. That's the only way I can stay on this journey, and riding bikes has brought me so much joy. I decided to attempt my first MS150 because it is so out of my comfort zone and supports such an incredible cause." She will be riding with the Karbach cycling team on her new Jamis road bike. 

    Rosa

    To donate to Rosa's MS150 fundraising page, click here

  • Houston to Austin on a BCycle

    by Christin Dietze | Apr 19,2017

    Last year, Houston BCycle's Operations Manager, Doogie Roux accepted the challenge of riding in the MS150 on a 50 pound bike share bike. When the first day was rained out, he was disappointed to only get to complete the 70 mile ride from La Grange to Austin. This year, he's not backing down from the challenge, and he has convinced two new co-workers to join him. 

    BCycle MS150

    Christin Dietze, Marketing and Communications Manager for Houston BCycle, and Matt Kocian, who has worked as a BCycle mechanic to keep bikes available in the Houston network, will be joining Roux for the 2017 BP MS150. They're goal is to raise at least $2,500 for the fight against MS while also bringing awareness to the values of bike share, which brings health, environmental and community benefits to any city with a program. In preparation for the ride, this team of three rode 60 miles in the Tour de Houston in March and learned a little more about the pros and cons of a long distance ride on a bike share bike. 
     
    "The large front basket is heavy, but ideal for bringing along beverages and snacks to keep up your energy on a long ride. It even works as an aerobar if you want to lean forward and take some pressure off of your back." according to Roux. 
     
    This will be Dietze's first MS150. "Aside from doing our part in fundraising for MS research, we're also hoping to inspire more people to consider riding in the MS150 regardless of their cycling experience or what type of bike they own. The only modification we'll make to these 3-speed BCycles is swapping out the regular pedals for clips-ins, to add more power to our pedal." she says. 
     
    Kocian is excited to take on his fourth MS150 with a new challenge. "After the Tour de Houston, I was surprised when my arms were more tired than my legs. These big red bikes aren’t built for speed, but I think we'll have a lot of fun completing the ride together."

    MS150 BCycle

    All three riders have friends who have battled or been personally affected by multiple sclerosis. Inspired by how these friends have overcome the challenges of MS, these three are taking on what they consider the ultimate MS150 challenge. 
     
    If you'd like to make a donation to these riders' MS150 fundraising pages, please follow the below links:

     
     
  • Best Q1 Yet and Program Updates for Houston BCycle

    by Christin Dietze | Apr 04,2017


    What a perfect start to 2017 for Houston BCycle! In January we announced a very exciting partnership with BBVA Compass, who sponsored a free ride program during the 10 days of Super Bowl and Free Ride Fridays for 8 weeks after. BBVA Compass gave our riders 5,682 free trips during Super Bowl and another 4,001 during Free Ride Friday, for a total 9,683 free trips on Houston BCycle in only 18 days. This trip count is almost double our regular daily average. While we are sad that the Free Ride Fridays have now come to an end, Houston BCycle is happy to be growing, thanks to our sponsors and the City of Houston.

    Instagram BCycle Post1   BCycle Instagram Post   Instagram Bcycle Group
    BCycle Rider Posts During Free Ride Fridays

    Our expansion kicked off January 23rd at the BBVA Compass partnership announcement and ribbon cutting ceremony for our Crawford Island station near Discover Green. We are now preparing to install four new stations in April. These new stations will be located at Dunlavy & Allen Parkway, Guadalupe Park, Woodland Park, and Main & Wichita. By the end of 2018, we will have installed a total of 71 new stations and added over 650 bikes to our network, so stay tuned! 

    Mayor on BBVA Bike with Houston Bike Share Board - Photo by Doogie Roux
    Mayor on BBVA Bike with Houston Bike Share Board - Photo by Doogie Roux

    We have also extended our hours and now operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. This change came April 1st, along with an update in our pricing structure. Our new pricing includes $9 monthly memberships and $99 annual memberships, available online at Houston.BCycle.com, which allow for unlimited 60 minute trips. Usage fees only apply to member trips over 60 minutes, which will accrue a $3 per 30 minutes additional charge. For walk-up users, the per-trip option at is $3 per 30 minutes.

    New Pricing New Bikes

    In Q1 of 2017, Houston BCycle riders took 36,189 trips by 13,801 users. This is a 28.5% increase in trips and 35.5% increase in users over 2016. Now with 24 hour a day operation along with more stations and bikes being added to the Houston BCycle network, we hope to continue to see these numbers grow for the remainder of 2017. 


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