Blue Bikes for All New Orleanians

Posted by Heather Haylett on March 1, 2018 in Advocacy

Bike Easy is a Better Bike Share Partnership grantee!

Bike Easy has just been announced as a recipient of the Better Bike Share Partnership Challenge Grant! This program is all about funding strategies to tackle barriers to equitable use of bike share while increasing ridership.

Blue Bikes can offer a unique opportunity to correct deep-rooted, historical inequities by providing an affordable, accessible way to commute to the city’s working-class populations and communities of color. Bike Easy will be implementing ‘Blue Bikes for All New Orleanians,’ an outreach program focused on overcoming long-lasting racial and class divides in New Orleans, by making sure New Orleanians know how to take advantage and seize this opportunity.

Areas of Focus

The focus of our outreach will be in two specific low-to-moderate income neighborhoods, the 7th Ward and Central City. These neighborhoods were chosen because of their location on the edge of the Blue Bikes service area, demographics, and their overall social determinants of health. Our goal is to build the number of rides in these areas and thereby demonstrate broad demand for bike share that can then propel expansion into other low-to-moderate income areas currently outside the service area.

This grant will also allow us to focus on promoting Blue Bikes to hospitality and service industry employees in the CBD and French Quarter. Most hospitality employees earn low wages, and transportation challenges are often cited by management and workforce alike. We’ll focus on providing the workforce with specific Blue Bikes how-to’s, safety advice, and reduced fare pass registration opportunities.

‘Blue Bikes for All New Orleanians’ allows Bike Easy and community partners to truly experience how Blue Bikes can improve their daily mobility and lives.

Rides with a purpose: Neighborhood rides that support community organizations’ missions while providing free use of the Blue Bikes system that includes a system overview, safety presentation, and free month trial pass with automatic access to the reduced fare annual pass.

Blue Bikes to work: A focus on engaging hospitality industry workers directly through Lunch-and-learns, skills workshops, shift meeting announcements, educational materials in break rooms, and support and encouragement from management.

Blue Bikes riders’ portraits: A campaign to publicize and share the stories of the many diverse people who use bike share.

Blue Bikes skills sessions: Bike Easy will incorporate bike share basics into our existing bike safety programming in the focus areas.

The momentum for bicycling improvement in New Orleans is high, and progress is happening every day! New Orleans is one of 10 cities participating in The Big Jump, where its target area overlaps with the Blue Bikes Service Area, and the focus areas proposed here. So, we’ll be getting to work to bring all these efforts to make sure whether you’re riding your own bike or a Blue Bike, it’s easy, safe, and fun for every New Orleanian!

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