Link plans to more than double e-bike inventory

Link: Dayton Bike Share wants to more than double its inventory of electric-assisted bicycles after expanding its network of bike hubs last year.

The local bike-share organization less than two years ago rolled out 100 e-bikes to complement its fleet of 225 green pedal bikes.

Link e-bikes (called eLink) are checked out and ridden about twice as often as the standard pedal bikes, which first launched in mid-2015, according to Laura Estandia, executive director of Bike Miami Valley, which is in charge of the bike-share program.

The city of Dayton recently issued a bid request for about 160 new electric bikes and 40 new bike batteries.

Bike Miami Valley received a federal grant of $286,000 through the Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission, and the city is administering the grant to meet its requirements, said Joseph Weinel, Dayton’s chief engineer.

Bids are due on April 28 and the contract should be awarded to the low bidder by the end of May, he said.

The grant funds comes from the MVRPC’s regionally controlled surface transportation program, Estandia said.

Link installed 10 new bike hubs last year, growing its network to 37 locations.

Link wants to increase the number of electric-assisted bikes at its hubs, which are spread across the city.

New hubs were added last year on Jefferson Street at the First and Fifth street intersections, and others were installed in West Dayton by the Jobs Center and the Wright Dunbar business district.

New hubs were placed at Huffman Avenue and East Fourth Street, as well as East Third and June streets, near the DK Effect “brewcade” and Gionino’s Pizza.

Others went into the Carillon neighborhood, near the OneFifteen campus and Welcome Park, and Deeds Point, across the river north of RiverScape MetroPark.

The city of Dayton also has recommended giving Link and Bike Miami Valley about $100,000 of its federal rescue funds potentially for new bike racks and signage in west and northwest Dayton.

If the project is approved, new racks possibly could come to neighborhoods like Old Dayton View, Grafton Hill, Wolf Creek and Five Points.

Since launching, Link has had more than 18,500 users who have taken more than 140,000 trips in Dayton. Link users rent bikes using the group’s app, and pay fees on a per-minute or membership basis.

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