One year later, Coast Bike Share in St. Petersburg is more than just coasting. Since the program’s launch, the City of St. Petersburg’s 300 Coast bikes have rolled almost 100,000 miles throughout the greater city area and even as far as Clearwater Beach and beyond. For those counting carbon credits, as of January 1, 2018, riders had prevented 76,246 pounds of carbon emissions from entering the earth’s atmosphere, according to Coast.
February 1, 2018 marked the celebratory anniversary of the full program roll out after a highly successful demo launch in late fall 2016. Coast Bike Share commemorated the occasion by hosting a free public event sporting a group bike ride followed by an awards ceremony honoring community supporters. Party-goers enjoyed refreshments from local hospitality partners, Parks & Rec as well as Black Crow Coffee Co., the city’s first bike-friendly business certified by the League of American Bicyclists (“The League”). The League’s Bicycle Friendly America program is touted as the national standard for assessing bicycle friendliness of businesses and communities throughout the entire U.S.
Recognizing people, partners and places which have played a role in Coast Bike Share’s year-one success, bike share members voted in various categories for the operator’s MVB (Most Valuable Biker) Awards. Best New Cycle Facility Project was awarded to the City of St. Petersburg for its Central Avenue sharrows and “bikes may use full lane” signs. Green Bench Brewing scooped the Coast Partner Business of the Year award for offering a discount on purchases to those visiting on Coast bikes. The Tweed Ride, hosted annually by the St. Petersburg Shuffleboard Club, was named the Coastable Bike Ride of the Year. Finally, for partnership on various events throughout Coast Bike Share’s first year including bike valet at Movies in the Park in May and October, and monthly “history bike” tours, St. Petersburg Preservation – recently re-named Preserve the Burg – was recognized as Coast’s Most Valuable Partner of the Year.
Tampa and St. Petersburg worked together to choose Coast Bike Share as the regional bike share solution in Tampa Bay. Though Tampa began its bike share service nearly two years ahead of St. Petersburg, the system’s popularity among residents and visitors alike has more than helped the latter city make a significant splash in the overall trips taken in the region.
The bike share program’s success, along with other bicycle community endeavors, have helped the City of St. Petersburg upgrade it’s Bicycle Friendly City status from Bronze to Silver by The League!
If you haven’t checked out Coast Bike Share, system information for either side the bay may be found at coastbikeshare.com.