After at least two failed attempts to roll out bikes on city streets, the city of College Park is trying once again to secure funds for bikesharing—this time, on a much smaller scale. The city is planning to apply for the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority grant program, which is due on March 4, 2011.
City staff have proposed requesting matching grant funds totaling $66,000 to initiate a pilot bikesharing program that would build on the existing Capital Bikeshare program in Virginia and the District of Columbia. Proposed locations for bikeshare stations are downtown, at the College Park Metro, and in the Hollywood Commercial District.
Funds would be matched with $66,000 from developer contributions ($10,000 from the Varsity project and $31,000 from the Domain project) and the City’s FY 11 Operating Budget ($25,000), according to city officials.
Early last year, the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (MWCOG) failed to win $10 million for expansion of its then-fledgling bikeshare program. The City of College Park and the University of Maryland had jointly applied for the grant through the federal stimulus program TIGER.
The original TIGER application asked for 2,250 bikes at 225 stations in D.C., Arlington, Alexandria, Fairfax City, Bethesda, Silver Spring, College Park, Hyattsville, and National Harbor, in addition to the 1,000 the District had already funded. A second similar application also failed to secure funding from the USDOT last fall.
The university is also looking at bikesharing opportunities, as part of the update to its Facilities Master Plan.
Despite College Park’s lack of an “official” bikesharing program, weBike, an independent project, rolled out its own version of bike sharing between the Mazza apartments and the university’s campus last year.