You may have noticed the appearance of new green and blue colored bicycles and scooters around campus and nearby areas. These are part of the Department of Transportation and Parking Management’s new bike share program that was launched earlier this summer in collaboration with the City of Rochester and the Rochester-Genesee Regional Transit Service (RTS). The bikes are owned and managed by HOPR, a national provider.
This new program takes the place of Pace, which ended in early 2020 as the company recalled its bikes permanently from multiple locations across the country including Rochester. HOPR is thus a welcome addition to the city for those who enjoyed the Pace bikes. HOPR has deployed a fleet of 200 pedal bikes throughout the city and its surrounding areas.
On the University premises, there are a total of 5 HOPR bike share rental and electric scooter dismount areas; two on River campus at Meliora Hall and Faculty Road and, three on the Medical Center campus at the School of Medicine & Dentistry, the Eastman Dental Center bus stop, and the Mental Health & Wellness bus stop. The electric scooter dismount zones are for those who wish to commute to and from campus, as the University does not permit the scooters to be operated within the campus premises for the safety of riders and pedestrians. Riders can rent bikes and scooters from these areas through the HOPR Transit App. There are various payment options available to riders including pay-as-you-go, single-day and monthly passes. The pay-as-you-go option for bikes costs $1 to unlock and 15 cents per minute for riding. The electric scooters cost $1 to unlock and 27 cents per minute.
The University of Rochester has been recognized by the Bicycle Friendly University program; a program that recognizes institutes of higher education that are promoting bikeable campuses for community members. The University has received two awards by the organization; the Bicycle Friendly University Bronze Award in 2015 and then the Bicycle Friendly University Silver Award in 2018 as more progress was made. It is not an uncommon sight to see bicycle riders around on campus. With the resumption of in-person activities on campus, members of the University community can often be seen commuting to and from campus via bikes. The University hopes the new HOPR bike share program encourages sustainable, easy and affordable transportation for the community.
Written by Hanyia Ahmed, Class of 2022