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Tugo Bike Share Launch
Thursday, November 9, 2017 @ 8:00 am - 5:00 pm MST
Tucson’s Tugo Bike Share system will launch on Friday, November 17, with an event that formally kicks off at 12:30 p.m. at Catalina Park, 900 North 4th Avenue. Parking will be available in the parking lot by Trinity Presbyterian Church, 400 E. University Boulevard.
Bike share is another form of public transit, intended for 30-minute rides from one docking station to another. The system’s 30-plus self-service docking stations are located around the downtown and University areas.
The launch event will be emceed by Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, who is scheduled to speak at 12:30 p.m. Immediately after the speakers’ remarks, dozens of cyclists, including Mayor Rothschild, will ride Tugo bikes from Catalina Park to various docking stations, and the system will be open to the public.
As of today, November 9, the tugobikeshare.com website is live and selling memberships. Pricing is simple and gives customers several ways to use the system. Tugo offers an $80 annual membership, an $18 monthly membership, or $8 daily passes. A $5 annual Access Pass is available to those who meet income thresholds. A $65 annual senior citizen membership is available to those 65 and older.
Bikes can be checked out from kiosk stations using a credit card or from smart stations using the free Android and iOS smartphone app, CycleFinder. Half the docking stations are kiosk stations and half are smart stations; the majority of smart stations are located near the University of Arizona. Bikes can be docked at any station.
Tugo Bike Share General Manager Priscilla Teran explains that the bicycles are designed to be used for commuting and other short, 30-minute-or-less trips. “The bikes come with three-speed gearing that can be operated from the handlebars, and there’s a front rack for carrying things like groceries or a purse,” she says.
Over the past five years, the number of bike share trips nationwide has increased from 2.3 million to more than 28 million. In addition, 80% of systems that have been in operation for more than a year have expanded since they launched.
Approved by the Tucson City Council in June 2016, Tugo Bike Share will be operated by Shift Transit, with equipment and technology provided by PBSC Urban Solutions. Together, these companies have deployed more than 50,000 bikes in cities around the world. In 2017 alone, Shift Transit customers have taken more than one million rides via their bike share systems across North America.
During an October 26 press conference at City Hall, Mayor Jonathan Rothschild noted that “bike share programs are the lowest-cost addition that can be made to a transit system,” that “bike share is always open – it runs 24/7” and that “Tugo Bike Share has no set routes – only the stations are set.”
Mayor Rothschild also thanked Tugo’s funders for bringing bike share to Tucson.
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