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Miesian Corners

Bike Sharing Uptown/SouthPark

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Humana (the evil healthcare conglomerate) is actually doing something amazing at its Louisville HQ. Working with Trek, a bike manufacturer, it has implemented a bike sharing program for employees. Workers sign a waiver and are then free to ride. About 2,000 of Humana's 8,500 downtown employees have enrolled in the program, and 300 or so have already used bikes. The company expects to add two more racks of bikes soon.

I think this is a great idea. According to this article from the Louisville Courier-Journal, and this article from the Commuter Page Blog, employees use the bikes to go to lunch, travel to other Humana offices nearby, or just go out for some fresh air. My question is this: why can't Wachovia, Bank of America, Duke Energy, Piedmont Natural Gas, Carolinas Healthcare, and Novant do the same? Thoughts?

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^ Maybe because you haven't written them a letter demanding that they do it :)

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My question is this: why can't Wachovia, Bank of America, Duke Energy, Piedmont Natural Gas, Carolinas Healthcare, and Novant do the same? Thoughts?

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Strongly suggest, would be a good idea. I doubt anyone there has even thought about it. Riding a bike in and around uptown is a breeze. Park rd, South blvd, Providence, Wilkinson, etc, not so much. Residents of the inner neighborhoods would be the ideal demographic to support such a plan. Its easy to bike from Dilworth to inside the loop, whereas walking 15 - 20 blocks is not very appealing.

I think its a great idea, and one maybe some here could bring to their employers. One question though, does Wachovia, BofA, Duke, etc, provide showering/locker facilities for the employees?

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^Gateway and One Wachovia have YMCAs. But I think these bikes are used primarily for short distances, so I'm not sure how much you would have to worry about showers and such.

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I also ask because bikes and nice clothes dont get along. The grease, and the absence of stretchy material make it difficult. My ride to East Blvd and back for dinner last night was spent looking down alot to make sure the gears didn't ruin my good jeans...

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I also ask because bikes and nice clothes dont get along. The grease, and the absence of stretchy material make it difficult. My ride to East Blvd and back for dinner last night was spent looking down alot to make sure the gears didn't ruin my good jeans...

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Has anyone thought of opening up the bus express lanes during the weekend for bikers? It would be downright fun cruising down the middle of Independence Blvd. Too bad the buses couldn't share those lanes with an additional bike lane during the week too.

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That would be a disaster in the making. There are too many hidden spots with the hills that you would get creamed by a bus using it. Also, you would have to negotiate traffic at the beginning/end of it to get back over to the side of the road. This is way too dangerous.

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I think the idea has merit but would be hard pressed to be successful outside of city neighborhoods. Charlotte overall is just not well acclimated to cyclists. Outside of the Myers Park Booty Loop route and East Boulevard, most motorists don't give cyclists enough room on the road. Creating more bike lanes and fostering a more friendly atmosphere toward this mode of transportation could encourage greater participation in these types of programs.

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Because bike riders won't follow the rules of the road. Ride with cars, share the same rules. Or how about some sidewalks?

I may get slammed for saying this......but there is also a certain pretentious notion held by some people that hoping into the BMW M6 and playing Lionel Ritchie too loud is a little bit cooler than hoping on the 2-wheeler and biking their way to lunch. It's not my way......i don't have a car or a bike :o

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Again, I'm not talking about a 5-mile trip here. I'm speaking of Gateway Village to the Corporate Center. Three Wachovia to Alexander Michael's. Piedmont Natural Gas to M5. Short trips. That's what Humana uses them for in Louisville.

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My point may have been missed about the sidewalks. I'm not sure about state to state what the law is, but we get pounded by bikes on the sidewalks in Boston. Running my kid over is but an after thought for some people on bikes.

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My point may have been missed about the sidewalks. I'm not sure about state to state what the law is, but we get pounded by bikes on the sidewalks in Boston. Running my kid over is but an after thought for some people on bikes.

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My question is this: why can't Wachovia, Bank of America, Duke Energy, Piedmont Natural Gas, Carolinas Healthcare, and Novant do the same? Thoughts?

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Davidson College has had a bike sharing program in place for at least the past few years. It is used by students getting from building to building on campus. Granted a college campus is a little different than downtown Charlotte...but the concept is the same. If Davidson College can do it I don't see why some of the downtown businesses couldn't do it.

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Many have taken the all too familiar tact of pointing out all the reasons it cannot work. These programs both change and reflect cultural changes in our attitudes about urban space and how it should/could be used. Twenty years ago, the concept would have been laughable in Louisville. In 2007, it is not. Why? The city has worked hard to redevelop downtown (it's no where near as vibrant as Charlotte). Advocacy groups like The Louisville Wheelmen (Louisville Bicycle Club) have pushed for more cycling-friendly roads and parks. The city is moving towards a complete street ordinance at present. Borrowing from Austin, a growing number of "keep Louisville weird" signs are popping up all over town. The culture is changing and this is finally being reflected in decisions of local government and the private sector.

It's frustrating in Charlotte to constantly hear "Oh, this would never work, we're a banking town." I disagree. Plenty of people have moved here from cities with vastly different cultures and are seeking something different than 1999 Charlotte. A program like the bike sharing one would likely costs less than $100,000. We spend that much on the bagel statues along the light rail corridor.

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It's frustrating in Charlotte to constantly hear "Oh, this would never work, we're a banking town." I disagree. Plenty of people have moved here from cities with vastly different cultures and are seeking something different than 1999 Charlotte. A program like the bike sharing one would likely costs less than $100,000. We spend that much on the bagel statues along the light rail corridor.

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As a side anecdote, when I interned for the CDOT many years ago, Bill Finger (who was in charge of transportation planning) was hit by a car when riding is bike to work one morning. I don't remember the extent of his injuries, but I believe it did involve a trip to the hospital.

As to whether it would work or not, I have no idea how well it would be received, and I suppose the first logical step would be the companies to survey thier employees to see if there is demand.

I would be a bit nervous about having 300 amateurs on bikes cruising around downtown during rush hour. Not only are bikers notorious for not following traffic rules, but Charlotte drivers are notorious for not wanting to share the road. I'm all for more bike-lanes, so I'd like to see these installed first before beginning a game of human pinball.

As an additional suggestion, since BofA already contributes $3,000 toward the purchase of a hybrid car, why not donate $1,500 toward a Vespa? They are much more environmentally friendly than a Prius, and would take up much less valuable parking. While not as "green" as a bike, they would have some additional appeal IMO, such as eliminating the need for a shower/change of clothes after the ride to work, and there would be at least some additional safety.

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As a side anecdote, when I interned for the CDOT many years ago, Bill Finger (who was in charge of transportation planning) was hit by a car when riding is bike to work one morning. I don't remember the extent of his injuries, but I believe it did involve a trip to the hospital.

As to whether it would work or not, I have no idea how well it would be received, and I suppose the first logical step would be the companies to survey thier employees to see if there is demand.

I would be a bit nervous about having 300 amateurs on bikes cruising around downtown during rush hour. Not only are bikers notorious for not following traffic rules, but Charlotte drivers are notorious for not wanting to share the road. I'm all for more bike-lanes, so I'd like to see these installed first before beginning a game of human pinball.

As an additional suggestion, since BofA already contributes $3,000 toward the purchase of a hybrid car, why not donate $1,500 toward a Vespa? They are much more environmentally friendly than a Prius, and would take up much less valuable parking. While not as "green" as a bike, they would have some additional appeal IMO, such as eliminating the need for a shower/change of clothes after the ride to work, and there would be at least some additional safety.

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Ask and you shall receive. The City of Charlotte will be hosting a workshop to come up with a Bicycle Plan for the city. It will be on October 10th from 5:30-7:30 PM in room 267 at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center. If you are unable to attend, you can contact Bicycle Program Manager Ken Tippette by email at [email protected] or by phone at (704) 336-2278. Another option is to fill out a survey form at www.charmeck.org/Departments/Transportation/Home.htm.

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The City of Charlotte is inviting the public to attend a workshop to help develop a Bicycle Plan for the city.

Oct. 10 from 5:30-7:30 p.m

Room 267 of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center, on East Fourth Street.

http://www.charlotte.com/breaking_news/story/295362.html

On a personal note - I ride my bike several times a week, in the evening, for recreation/exercise. My usual route is starting at Independence & Margaret Wallace and traveling straight up Independence to Monroe Rd/7th street and from there either into uptown, or into Dillworth / East Blvd / South End.

Traveling at night I try to stay mostly on sidewalks when they are present, since there is a definite lack of bicycle lanes on the roads. (The one short strip that I have seen is by the new Target) At night there are few people on the sidewalks and is far safer to me than riding in the street.

More sidewalks would be great in general, to move people away from being locked into having to take a car anywhere they go.

Bike lanes would obviously be a big help too.

The Independence Express corridor running into uptown is a mystery to me. I've seen an actual bus in there maybe twice in the year that I've lived in CLT. It runs straight down what I call Death Valley, the stretch between Sharon Amity at the to pof the hill and Briar Creek at the bottom. One huge strip of empty strip malls. As my primary route into the city, it's rather depressing riding through it every day. Something really needs to get development going on there.

But to stay on topic here, more bike lanes! More sidewalks! :)

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Ask and you shall receive. The City of Charlotte will be hosting a workshop to come up with a Bicycle Plan for the city. It will be on October 10th from 5:30-7:30 PM in room 267 at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center. If you are unable to attend, you can contact Bicycle Program Manager Ken Tippette by email at [email protected] or by phone at (704) 336-2278. Another option is to fill out a survey form at www.charmeck.org/Departments/Transportation/Home.htm.

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