Reddy Bikeshare and Independent Health are launching the 2022 bikesharing season today, with plans to upgrade the 400 bikes with scan-to-unlock technology.
The bikes’ new hardware will improve access to the entire fleet across Buffalo and Niagara Falls, and soon will be available in 90 different locations. Riders who are subscribed to the network using the Social Bicycles app will be able to unlock a Reddy bike in one step by scanning a QR code using their smartphone. Currently, riders have to input an account number and PIN to release the bike’s lock.
“As pioneers of healthy and active transportation in partnership with Independent Health, together we are continuing to serve our community with an innovative approach to accessibility,” said Nathan Schultz, Director of Operations for Reddy Bikeshare. “Accessing a bike will be easier than ever before - with a quick scan on your phone, you’ll be able to hop on a bike in seconds, and for folks without access to a phone, member RFID cards will remain available”.
For the first time, Reddy Bikeshare recorded its most diverse background of users in its 2021 survey with nearly half identifying as non-white. Schultz says that with 54% of respondents identifying as women, Reddy Bikeshare is building a more inclusive service that is conventionally a male-dominated space. Not only as an option for Western New Yorkers, survey data indicated that one out of four riders are from outside of the Buffalo and Niagara Region.
“Independent Health is deeply rooted and committed to this community. We take great pride in creating a culture of health through programs like Reddy Bikeshare that have a direct and measurable impact on improving the health and wellbeing of all Western New Yorkers,” said Independent Health spokesman Frank J. Sava. “As the Reddy Bikeshare program continues to grow and expand, it’s so rewarding to see the positive impact it’s having on the many diverse residents living in Buffalo, Niagara Falls and surrounding communities.”
Since 2016, more than 56,000 Reddy Bikeshare riders have:
Pedaled for 380,194 miles, equal to circling the globe 15 times.
Burned 15 million calories (or 348,837 chicken wings).
Offset 246,000 lbs of carbon (equal to 139 tons or 17,000 trash bags recycled instead of landfilled)
Schultz says the Team expects ridership to continue to grow through the expanded access via the technology upgrade, as well as continuing outreach efforts working with partners region-wide. Reddy Bikeshare and Independent Health will continue to partner with the City of Niagara Falls to offer $1 annual passes to residents throughout the 2022 season.
"Once again, residents will have the opportunity to purchase an annual Reddy Bikeshare pass for just $1.00. With the skyrocketing price of gasoline, this special rate will allow for expanded transportation options for residents in Niagara Falls," said Niagara Falls Mayor Robert Restaino. "For visitors who travel to our City during the spring, summer and fall months, these bikes will give everyone affordable access to quick transportation throughout Niagara Falls."
In Buffalo, residents of the Fruit Belt community can redeem a free annual pass, supported by the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC). Employees of the BNMC as well as M&T Bank and the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority can also receive free annual passes, normally $55 and $0.01/min to ride.
All other Western New Yorkers can hop on a Reddy bike for a discount if you sign up in the month of April. Reddy Bikeshare and Independent Heath are extending a 50% discount off the price of an annual pass, normally $55 plus tax. The promo is available through the month of April, redeemable with code: REDDY22 at reddybikeshare.com or by downloading the Social Bicycles app.
In 2021, Reddy’s parent nonprofit, Shared Mobility, began testing pedal assist e-bikes with local partners across Western New York. E-bikes utilize innovative technology that gives riders a gentle assist for the user, allowing folks to ride farther and for longer. Based on positive feedback from test users and community members, Shared Mobility will work with local leaders and community partners to begin slowly introducing e-bikes into the Reddy fleet this season.
Reddy Bikeshare will also continue partnering with GObike, East Bike Club and Slow Roll Buffalo, along with community-based organizations across the region to increase awareness of bikesharing to more audiences.
“We’ve laid a lot of groundwork over the last six years, developing strong ties within our communities, and we expect interest in bikesharing to continue to grow,” said Schultz.“This new season and inclusion of new technologies is an exciting milestone and together with Independent Heath and our supporting partners, we are working to improve, expand and build out our network to make biking even more accessible in more communities.”
For more information and to sign up, visit reddybikeshare.com or download the Social Bicycles app. To redeem a member RFID card in lieu of using a phone to unlock a bike, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 716-407-7474.