Nice Ride Minnesota Expands Into New Neighborhoods, Brings Innovative Dockless Bike Share and Bike Parking to Minneapolis

Nice Ride Minnesota begins adding 1,500 new dockless bikes and 200 parking hubs throughout the city

To celebrate expansion, free rides offered all day on Car Free Day, Friday Sept. 21

MINNEAPOLIS (Sept. 18, 2018) – Today, Nice Ride Minnesota (Nice Ride) began expanding into additional neighborhoods and adding 1,500 brand new dockless bikes to the fleet. These dockless bikes will be parked at the innovative parking hubs being installed throughout Minneapolis, of which there will be 200 by the end of the year. Nice Ride will increase riding options in many neighborhoods, with a focus on Phillips, Seward and North Minneapolis.

“Expanding access to multimodal transit options is essential for any city that’s serious about making sure that residents who can’t afford cars can make it to work and mitigating climate change,” said Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey. “Nice Ride’s expansion to neighborhoods in Phillips, Seward, and North Minneapolis also provides a more affordable transit option for communities that have historically been cut off from access to jobs and amenities. With this launch, Minneapolis is showing that it will continue leading on transit equity.”

“This innovative system will provide increased and equitable access to bike share in neighborhoods across Minneapolis,” said Bill Dossett, Nice Ride Minnesota executive director. “In order to ensure the system is responding to the needs and interests of the public, we are engaging residents and business owners to identify dockless parking hubs. We are proud to deliver this expanded, orderly, and innovative system to the Minneapolis community and visitors alike.”

“We have been proud to be the title sponsor of Nice Ride over the past decade as they have helped lead the way to make the Twin Cities an even better place to ride a bike,” said Janelle Waldock, Vice President of Community Health and Health Equity at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota. “We are excited to see the new blue bikes rolling out to expand Nice Ride to more people in more places, while supporting our mission to make a healthy difference in people’s lives.”

Nice Ride has worked with the City of Minneapolis, the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis Parks, and urban planning leaders to develop these 200 parking hubs. Riders will use the upgraded Nice Ride app to locate the hubs and to unlock the dockless bikes parked there. Hubs will be clearly marked on Minneapolis streets and signage will include the Nice Ride logo and wayfinding to designate the dockless parking location. Dockless bike riders are required to end all trips and park their bikes inside the hubs.

Nice Ride will build upon this system in the coming years, adding more hubs and an additional 1,500 dockless bikes in 2019, with hopes to add 1,500 subsequently each year thereafter until 2021.

Together with title sponsor Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, Nice Ride will be the first system in North America to widely introduce the hub parking concept for dockless bikes. Most critically, these hubs will allow Nice Ride to quickly expand into additional neighborhoods, bringing bike share to more communities in Minneapolis. These hubs will be located in areas to optimize access to Nice Ride bikes, including existing docking stations; neighborhood commercial nodes; parks and sports fields; libraries; high frequency transit zones; locations near apartments; and other multifamily housing. At the same time, the designated parking areas laid out by the hubs will emphasize reliability and order in public spaces, as the Nice Ride station-based system has provided since launch in 2010.

To suggest locations for additional parking hubs, individuals should visit NiceRideMN.com/HubRequest. The public is also invited to two feedback forums facilitated by Community Design Group to discuss this bike share innovation in Minneapolis, the first on October 4 (at University of Minnesota Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center, UROC) and the second on October 18 (at Brian Coyle Center). Nice Ride staff will also be on hand to answer questions and hear your ideas about the first few weeks of operations, the Dockless Parking Zone Master Plan, and implementation of Nice Ride’s equity plan.

In anticipation of this significant development, Nice Ride has already lowered the price of single rides from $3 to $2 when purchased at a kiosk and $1 when purchased through the Nice Ride app. Usage fees were also lowered to $2 per half hour.

Riders can try the new dockless system on Sept. 21 as part of Car Free Day in the City of Minneapolis. The free pass will be available on the Nice Ride app and users will have access to unlimited 30-minute rides all day on all Nice Ride bikes throughout the Twin Cities.

“I am glad to see us on the leading edge of new mobility options,” said Robin Hutcheson, Minneapolis Public Works director. “This expanded and dockless bike share system will make it easier for people to get around by bike while staying recognizable, simple and organized. We feel very fortunate to have this long-term and very productive partnership with Nice Ride, and we can’t wait to see what comes next.”

“Nice Ride has been a wonderful partner and we look forward to working with them and the community to assess the benefits and impacts of dockless parking hubs in the parks,” said Jennifer Ringold, deputy superintendent for Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board.

“We’re excited to see bike share grow and hope it will serve more neighborhoods in Minneapolis,” said Maria Wardoku, Our Streets Minneapolis board president. “When more people have access to bike share, our city is a happier, healthier, and more vibrant place.”

About Nice Ride Minnesota
Launched in 2010, Nice Ride Minnesota is the Twin Cities bike sharing system. Our mission is to enhance quality of life by providing convenient, easy to use bike sharing that will provide residents and visitors a healthy, fun, different way to get around town. We are part of a growing community of people and organizations working for active lifestyles, vibrant cities and livable public spaces. We’re helping build that community by making it easy for everyone to ride a bike and to feel safe and welcome while riding.
https://www.niceridemn.com/

About Blue Cross Blue Shield Minnesota
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, with headquarters in the St. Paul suburb of Eagan, was chartered in 1933 as Minnesota’s first health plan and continues to carry out its charter mission today: to promote a wider, more economical and timely availability of health services for the people of Minnesota. A nonprofit, taxable organization, Blue Cross is the largest health plan based in Minnesota, covering 2.9 million members in Minnesota and nationally through its health plans or plans administered by its affiliated companies. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, headquartered in Chicago. Stella, a Minnesota-based company designed to nurture and scale differentiated businesses across the country to improve health in bold and innovative ways, serves as the parent organization for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota and its subsidiaries.