Cleveland forges ahead into bikes 'on demand' with study into bike sharing kiosks

CLEVELAND - On-demand is a staple of pay-per-view TV, but Cleveland may soon experience on-demand bicycle sharing.

Bike sharing is popular in many cities worldwide. Kiosks of bikes are placed at strategic areas throughout a city, cyclists use a credit card or membership card to rent a bike and later return it to the same or other kiosk elsewhere in the city.

"We want to determine if and how bike sharing can be beneficial to Cleveland's citizens, commuters and visitors," said Chief of Sustainability Jenita McGowan.

Bike sharing targets people without bikes, tourists experiencing a city or those looking for a convenient bike for fitness or errands.

Jacob VanSickle, executive director of Bike Cleveland, a cyclist advocacy organization, applauded the city's move.

"Bike sharing is an idea that was identified as a priority for Bike Cleveland following our founding summit that took place in 2011," he said. "We are excited that the city of Cleveland has taken the lead on the first steps in bringing bike sharing to Cleveland."

On Wednesday, the city of Cleveland announced in a news release the selection of firms to perform a six-month study. Toole Design Group will lead the study as BrownFlynn will be an engineering and planning subcontractor.

The Mayor Frank Jackson's Office of Sustainability said the study will begin in February and cited the in cycling and related business as a reason behind looking into the feasibility of bike sharing.

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