BETHPAGE, N.Y.–One credit union here has found a new way to get its name out in front of the community—it is sponsoring a start-up bike-share program.
The program, called Bethpage Ride and sponsored by Bethpage FCU, is being launched in three communities to encourage people to ride bikes. It includes 100 orange bikes at 17 stations in the Village of Babylon, the Village of Patchogue and Hampton Bays, according to Newsday.
“Residents and visitors will be able to leave their cars behind with the knowledge that a healthy, fun, convenient option is waiting for them,” County Executive Steve Bellone told Newsday.
The for-rent bike program is modeled after Citi Bike in New York City. Officials, who told Newsday the program is "the first of its kind" because of its regional reach, said it will help reduce traffic congestion, encourage a healthier lifestyle and expand the county’s transit options.
Bikes are being placed near train stations, downtowns and waterfront areas as part of an attempted solution for the so-called “the last-mile connection.”
The Last Mile
“From the mobility perspective of people that take the train out to come to our beaches and to Fire Island, you have that last mile,” Linda Armyn, Bethpage Federal FCU’s senior vice president of corporate affairs, told Newsday.
Armyn declined to disclose the cost of its sponsorship.
To use a bike, riders first need to download Pace, a phone app, and create an account. A 15-minute ride costs $1 while a membership costs $10 per month or $60 per year for unlimited trips of up to 30 minutes. Ridership fees will go to Boston-based Zagster Inc., which runs more than 200 such programs in 38 states, to help cover maintenance and operational costs, Newsday reported.