Downtown Detroit Partnership Announces Partnership with Henry Ford Health System/Health Alliance Plan and City of Detroit on Bike Share System

November 16, 2015

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DETROIT – The Downtown Detroit Partnership (DDP) today announced its partnership with Henry Ford Health System/Health Alliance Plan (Henry Ford/HAP) and the City of Detroit’s Department of Transportation (DDOT) on Detroit’s first public bike share system.

As the title sponsor of the system, Henry Ford/HAP has pledged a three full year financial commitment to help launch and operate the bike share system. DDOT has collaborated with DDP to secure federal grant funding, which will be used to purchase the bike share stations. Additionally, DDOT is working with DDP to secure an equipment provider and operator for the system.

“I am thrilled to announce these major partners,” said Lisa Nuszkowski, Executive Director of Detroit Bike Share at DDP. “The overall level of interest and support in bringing bike share to Detroit has been incredibly encouraging, and we’re looking forward to exploring how we can use this new transportation option to connect Detroiters to economic opportunity and increase the number of choices people have to get around.”

Detroit’s bike share system also is receiving support from the Michigan Department of Transportation, Southeast Michigan Council of Governments, Hudson Webber Foundation, and Kresge Foundation.

The goal for the first phase of bike share is to provide approximately 350 bikes and 35 stations throughout greater downtown Detroit. With the system, Detroit will join over 70 cities across the United States that offer bike share. The system will be designed for short distance trips and will seek to maximize use of Detroit’s growing network of over 170 miles of bike lanes and greenways as another transit option.

“We are so excited to be a key player in bringing a bike share program to the city of Detroit. This is a unique partnership that will have a very positive impact on the health and wellness of our community, and provides another meaningful opportunity for Henry Ford Health System to enhance the cultural and economic future of our great City," said Nancy Schlichting, CEO, Henry Ford Health System.

The number of people biking in Detroit has increased dramatically in recent years, from thousands of people participating in group rides, such as Slow Roll and Tour de Troit, to those using bikes to commute to work, run errands or get around town. The Hudson-Webber Foundation's 7.2-square-mile study reported that approximately 250 bikes pass through greater downtown on a typical weekday afternoon, and the League of American Bicyclists lists Detroit as the fastest growing biking city for commuters in the country."DDOT is very excited to partner with DDP to bring this new bike share program to the city," said Dan Dirks, Director of DDOT. "This program will expand commuting options for Detroiters and will allow residents and visitors alike to explore Detroit."

Consideration of bike share in Detroit began at Wayne State University, where the Office of Economic Development conducted a feasibility study and helped raise awareness and funds for a public bike share system. The program officially transitioned over to DDP in July 2015.

DDP is seeking additional sponsors and partners to launch bike share in 2016. For more information, please contact Lisa Nuszkowski at bikeshare@downtowndetroit.org.

A Request for Proposals (RFP) for an equipment provider and system operations will be released by the City of Detroit later this month.