Reddy kicks off eighth season building off program’s busiest season to date with new payment plan
Reddy Bikeshare, in partnership with Independent Health, kicks off its eighth season of providing affordable access to bikes by announcing an expanded footprint into state parks along the Niagara River. Beginning this spring, Reddy will add seven new stations at Whirlpool, Devil’s Hole, DeVeaux Woods and Niagara Falls state parks.
The expansion grows Reddy’s footprint to 113 total stations spanning between Buffalo and Niagara Falls. Last year, Reddy Bikeshare members logged 47,254 trips, an all-time record of trips in the system. That total represents a 21% increase from 2021, which held the record prior.
“Seven years ago, the Reddy Bikeshare program was a new and novel idea in Western New York to encourage a healthy, leisurely activity and also an environmentally friendly means of transportation,” said Kathy Glieco, vice president of marketing at Independent Health. “Today, Reddy Bikeshare is an integral part of our community, and adding a footprint inside the state park system is going to further enrich the experience of Western New York’s greatest natural asset for both residents and visitors alike. With strong local roots, Independent Health is truly committed to creating a culture of health in Western New York, and programs like Reddy Bikeshare have a direct and measurable impact on improving the health and wellbeing of our community.”
To date, visitors and Western New Yorkers have burned a combined 19.1 million calories with a Reddy Bike, or framed in another way, the equivalent of 40,000 fried chicken wings.
The Niagara River Greenway Commission, which has been working for the last 15 years to connect the Niagara River all along the Shoreline Trail, helped make three of the seven stations possible.
“Now with the Niagara Gorge Rim Trail complete, we are looking for more ways to ‘activate the trail’ and make it easier for the community to use,” said Greg Stevens, director of the Niagara River Greenway Commission. “Reddy Bikeshare is helping to make this happen by providing shared-use bicycles located at key trail nodes from Niagara Falls north to the Ralph Wilson Trailhead at Devil's Hole, just across the road from Niagara University.”
In addition to the Niagara River Greenway Commission, the expansion was also made possible with coordination and support from New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, and Delaware North.
“Delaware North is proud to support this community initiative that offers a strong addition to the recreational options available to our guests from around the world,” said Michael Barnes, general manager for Delaware North at Niagara Falls State Park. “Having Reddy Bikes available at more locations will help residents and visitors create memorable experiences at Niagara Falls.”
The seven new stations will be launched throughout this spring and can be found at:
•Niagara Falls State Park
√ Goat Island: Near the Cave of the Winds visitors center
√ Cataract House Park: Corner of Buffalo Avenue and Old Main Street (available now)
√ Riverway: Parking area near the First Street bridge to Goat Island
√ Niagara Gorge Discovery Center: Adjacent to park information and restrooms (available now)
•Whirlpool State Park: Gorge-level parking area near park pavilion (available now)
•DeVeaux Woods State Park: Along park loop road across from baseball diamond (available now)
•Devil’s Hole State Park: Gorge-level parking area accessible from the Niagara Scenic Parkway (available now)
“There are so many ways to explore Niagara Falls State Park, the Niagara River and the Niagara Gorge area, and none better than by bike,” said Mark V. Mistretta, Niagara Region director for the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. “We are grateful to Reddy Bikeshare for this opportunity to provide low-cost options for visitors to our community. I am looking forward to seeing more and more use of these amazing trails by locals and visitors alike.”
Reddy Bikeshare expanded its service into Niagara Falls in 2019 with a network of 30 stations accommodating a fleet of 145 bikes connecting visitor destinations and neighborhood-based assets. With support from the City of Niagara Falls, Reddy Bikeshare offers all city residents a $1 discounted annual pass, which permits riding a bike at one penny per minute. These station installments make up the largest expansion in the Cataract City, and its first entry into state park land.
“Reddy has already been providing a sense of fun and needed transportation for both our city residents and tourists over the years,” Niagara Falls Mayor Robert Restaino said. “To have even more bikes being installed this year will help connect more people to our state parks and see what we have to offer to make your time in Niagara Falls even better.”
Also beginning this season, Reddy is making improvements to its payment plan options to help encourage more folks to get riding. The bikeshare operator is turning its two-day pass into a pay-as-you-go pass that doesn’t expire. The pay-as-you-go pass features the same price of $3 sign-up and 10 cents per minute of biking.
“Our team’s first priority has been catalyzing an active lifestyle using Reddy Bikeshare,” said Simon Husted, Reddy’s communications and marketing coordinator. “With pay-as-you-go, now people can pedal without worrying about how many more hours they have left before their pass expires.”
Additionally, Reddy Bikeshare is lowering the cost of its annual pass from $55 to $40. Annual pass members pay only a penny per minute of bike riding, and the change is meant to encourage more folks to ride throughout the season.
“At a time when prices of seemingly everything are going up, we want to do right by our community and help make biking more affordable” Husted said.
All of these improvements come as Reddy Bikeshare, in partnership with Independent Health, is working to introduce a new fleet of electric pedal-assist bikes into the bikeshare network and available to any person with an active pass. More details to come later in the season about the launch of this e-bike fleet.
“Electric mobility is the future, and our Reddy Team is excited to bring e-bikes to Western New York,” said Mitch LaRosa, chief development officer for Shared Mobility Inc., the nonprofit organization that operates Reddy Bikeshare. “Building on e-bike pilot activities in 2021 and 2022, we look forward to offering an innovative, safe, and accessible way to get around and stay active.”
Reddy Bikeshare launched July 21, 2016, and has steadily grown in usage and membership ever since. Over those seven years, users have pedaled 478,018 miles across the region. The bikeshare season runs between April through the end of October.
Independent Health, a not-for-profit health plan headquartered in Buffalo, serves nearly 400,000 members and provides health care products and benefits designed to engage consumers in their health and well-being. To learn more, go to www.independenthealth.com.
Shared Mobility Inc. of Buffalo is a transportation solutions nonprofit that focuses on cutting-edge technology and best practices to build mobility systems that serve disadvantaged communities in small and mid-sized markets. For further information, visit www.sharedmobilty.org.