Indego, Philadelphia’s bike-share system, is slated to reach 1 million rides in mid-November! The system has been a strong success by just about every measure since it was launched in April 2015, and in just a year and a half, the blue bikes — there currently are over 1,000 bikes and 100 stations — have become a familiar part of the Philadelphia landscape.
Some highlights from the past year:
The papal visit: One year ago, when Pope Francis visited and cars were banned in Center City, Indego remained open to give people a taste of living in Philadelphia with completely walkable and bikeable streets. In 2015, a strong day garnered 2,000 rides; on Pope weekend, Indego provided 5,000 rides per day to locals and visitors alike. That meant each bike was ridden seven times per day!
The white stuff: Just like the rest of the city, Indego got whopped with Winter Storm Jonas. The Indego operations team, based in Kensington, had street crews shoveling out bike stations to get the system operating four days after the blizzard.
More stations, more riders: Spring saw an almost 50 percent expansion of Indego to new parts of the city, including Brewerytown, Strawberry Mansion and Parkside, thanks to a grant from the William Penn Foundation. Stations were added to various locations in Fairmount Park, including Philadelphia Zoo.
Accessibility: One of the major goals of Indego was to provide equitable and accessible bike sharing. This year, we focused on new forms of media to spread the word, with partnerships with WDAS, Fox 27 news, the Robin Hood Dell and dozens of community organizations. In addition, Indego introduced the Access Pass, $5 monthly pass for Philadelphians who use the PA Access card.
Although Indego has not made it to Mt. Airy and Chestnut Hill, it has a significant Mt. Airy presence with its leadership. Kristin Gavin, former Executive Director of the non-profit Gearing Up, is General Manager of Indego; and Jake Siemarowski, born and raised in East Mt. Airy, is the lead bike mechanic for all 1,000 bikes.