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Bike share program nears completion

SGA has approved and completed paperwork for a campus bike share program but is waiting for bike racks to be installed around campus.

The bike share program is affiliated with St. Joseph transit, which also has a bike share program. SGA Vice President Evan Banks took over the bike share project from former President Kyle Fuson.

“Last semester, I began taking over for getting the Missouri Western bike share program rolled out,” Banks said. “We got the bicycles and we put in the paperwork to the physical plant to get the bike racks that the students paid for on campus, painted and installed.”

There are currently bikes available for student use, but the current racks are not the final ones. Banks says that there has been some disagreement between the city and the university about the color of the bike racks that has slowed the completion of the project.

“They wanted black, I suppose because it fits the MoWest color scheme of black and gold better,” Banks said. “But in all actuality all that has done has just proven to be a bureaucratic red tape.”

Banks says that proper bike racks will help maintain the program moving forward.

“Those bike have some specific rules for how to maintain them and where to put them that are not as easily understood without the literature that’s on the specified bike racks,” Banks said.

One of the pieces of literature is a procedure and phone number for reporting broken bikes.

“If nobody is calling that number and nobody knows because the literature is on the bike rack, then the initiative will fall apart,” Banks said.

SGA President Austen Hall says that while the program is running, it does not currently meet their expectations.

“It is up and running, but not to our liking as of yet,” Hall said. “The delay is more bureaucracy and a lack of communication than anything right now. However, with school starting back up, communication should be vastly improved and it should be running as envisioned within the next month.”

In addition to getting the correct racks in place, Banks says that they are currently looking to recruit members of the campus community to assist with the bike share program.

“We are seriously looking for sponsorship of a bike-friendly faculty member and bike-interested students to create a bike club that might help in the maintenance and staying-power of this program,” Banks said.

Bike share bikes currently sit in public bike racks that already existed on campus.

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