Capital Bikeshare Adds Arlington Stations, More to Come in DC

by Jennifer Thornhill

Courtesy of Capital Bikeshare

If you don’t currently live or work close enough to a Capital Bikeshare station to use its bikes for your daily commute, you may soon enough.

Over the weekend, Arlington County added the first four of 30 planned stations along the Rosslyn-Ballston Corridor, and DC is set to begin adding stations this Wednesday as part of a plan to add 25 new locations in the city this year.

The regional bikesharing service enables riders to use a bike for up to 24 hours at a time via four membership options (24-hour, 5-day, 30-day or annual). While the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) and Arlington County are responsible for funding their respective stations, the system is run by a single operator, AltaBike. Since launching in September 2010, Capital Bikeshare has registered over 250,000 rides, as of earlier this month.

“We’re now averaging anywhere from 2,000 to 3,000 trips per day since the spring season started,” said Chris Holben, Bikesharing Project Manager at DDOT. This is up from approximately 1,500 daily rides over the winter. Holben attributes the uptick in ridership to the warmer weather and arrival of tourist season, but noted that he doesn’t expect the growth to slow

The expansion in Arlington this year will more than triple the number of locations in the northern Virginia county, which prior to this weekend consisted of 14 stations clustered primarily in Crystal City. The four stations added over the weekend are:

  • North Lynn Street and 19th Street in Rosslyn
  • Wilson Boulevard and North Fort Myer Drive in Rosslyn
  • North Pierce Street and Clarendon Boulevard in Rosslyn
  • North Rhodes and 16th Street North in Rosslyn

“We’d like to bring it to the whole county and that’s the ultimate goal,” said Chris Eatough, Program Manager for BikeArlington. “But with funding coming in stages it will take time to build that out.” Columbia Pike and Shirlington are likely candidates for the next round of funding, which should materialize in 2012.

While the District’s 2011 expansion will go into all eight wards, it will focus primarily on infilling in Wards 1 and 2 (downtown and Columbia Heights). “We need to beef up our core areas before we can start moving into new neighborhoods,” Holben explained, noting that Capital Bikeshare’s strategy is to expand in tight clusters in part so that users can easily access a bike and have multiple options for pick-up and drop-off.

The District will add a location at the Ronald Reagan Building this week and will replace five stations from its inaugural bikesharing system, SmartBike DC, within the next two weeks at Judiciary Square, the Portrait Gallery, Metro Center, Farragut Square and Foggy Bottom. Population and employment density are the two most heavily weighted factors in Capital Bikeshare’s formula for identifying new locations, but it also considers proximity to bike infrastructure, other modes of public transit, and attractions like libraries and malls.

See other articles related to: rosslyn, ddot, capital bikeshare, ballston, arlington

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/capital_bikeshare_adds_arlington_stations_more_to_come_in_dc/3348

1 Comment

  1. Jason said at 9:39 am on Wednesday April 20, 2011:

    Woot! I work right at the Clarendon metro and this makes me 100% more happy.

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