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ValleyBike Share is coming to Holyoke!

What is ValleyBike Share? It’s a fleet of public rental bikes in a network of stations throughout Holyoke, Springfield, South Hadley, Northampton and Amherst (including UMASS) that anyone can pay to use. The bicycles are e-assist bicycles meaning that they are regular bikes with a battery powered “pedal-assist”. When you hop on and push the pedals, a small motor engages and gives you a boost, so you can zip up hills with a loaded backpack and cruise over challenging terrain without exhausting yourself. You control your speed with your feet just like with a regular bike but can accelerate more easily.

All bicycles are equipped with GPS with a 12-inch touch screen providing a real-time system map. Users pay with a mobile app or with an RFID card which can be purchased at the following locations: Veterans Park and in front of CTown Supermarket.

Nine stations are being constructed in the City with locations at: South Holyoke (in front of C -Town market), Springdale Park, Depot Square (corner of Dwight & Main Streets), Veteran’s Park, Holyoke Library, corner of Dwight & Pleasant Streets, Mackenzie Field (in front of CVS), Crosier Field (corner of Northampton and Beech Streets and Holyoke Community College. Here is a map of the locations available for download. The green circles indicate the locations.

“ValleyBike will be a great addition to each of our communities and the region as a whole, increasing our connectivity along with recent upgrades such as regional rail service” said Mayor Alex Morse. “Coupled with key investments in our densest neighborhoods and complete streetscapes that are favorable to pedestrians and bikers, the bike share system will pay an important role in Holyoke’s continued renaissance.”

ValleyBike will launch with celebrations, comments, demonstrations, and a parade at 11:45 AM on Thursday June 28, 2018 at the Smith College Indoor Track and Tennis Facilities at 106 Lower College Lane.

Northampton Mayor David J. Narkewicz, on behalf of ValleyBike, announced “500 pedal-assist bicycles in 50 stations in five communities will help transform transportation options for many of our residents. Northampton is proud to be the lead community and fiscal sponsor for our seven member ValleyBike consortium.  This will help provide that extra mile that PVTA can’t always provide, and that is too far to walk and short to drive. We are proud to serve all residents, including those with the least options.”

Springfield Mayor Domenic J. Sarno added, “Springfield is delighted to be part of ValleyBike!   Serving our downtown core and medical district; bikeshare will be a benefit for residents, workers, and visitors.  Bikeshare is good for one’s health and our environment too.  Just one more reason why Springfield is a great place to live, work and visit!  Congratulations to all of our partners for coming together on this great regional project.”

“ValleyBike is yet another exciting example of how our region, and its cities and towns, are working collaboratively and proactively to shape a smart and sustainable future for us all,” said Pioneer Valley Planning Commission Executive Director Tim Brennan. “ValleyBike not only introduces a new type of shared mobility but offers a creative and sensible way to improve our air, our health while capturing the benefits of modern day pedal power.”

ValleyBike was initiated by Amherst, Northampton, and PVPC, and then quickly joined by Springfield, Holyoke, and South Hadley. The planning effort was led by PVPC, which found the funding for planning.  Leadership of the effort switched to Northampton for the implementation phase of the project.

Within the next week, residents will be able to sign up at www.ValleyBike.org, with special founding membership opportunities for a very limited time.

ValleyBike has contracted with Bewegen Technologies and Corps Logistics to build and operate the system.  Alain Ayotte, Bewegen CEO said, “Since the very beginning, the Bewegen team has been convinced of the strong potential for bike sharing to succeed in Pioneer Valley. Data from our systems launched around the world have shown that our Pedelec bikes offer a transportation alternative that is more attractive to a diverse range of users, contributing to a larger mode shift towards cycling. Our team is committed to this project, which will continue to strengthen healthy living and active mobility throughout the region. Working in partnership with Corps Logistics, local veterans will be hired to operate the bike share system, creating jobs and contributing to the local economy.”

ValleyBike is funded by MassDOT/Federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) grant, Bewegen investments, community investments in station pads, user fees, and its sponsors.


Posted on June 27, 2018 by