You are on page 1of 2

July 9, 2018

Mayor Emanuel and Commissioner Scheinfeld:

People across Chicago are excited about the potential for dockless bikeshare to increase access to
bicycles and get more people biking in communities across Chicago. Divvy has been an incredible
transportation asset for the city but it’s not able to serve all neighborhoods or meet growing demand
everywhere. The city’s pilot program is rightfully focused on communities that lack access to Divvy and
face other barriers to bicycling.

We believe there’s potential to continue to improve the program based on what’s happening on the
ground and lessons from other cities. The following recommendations are based on ongoing dialogue
with the city, dockless vendors, peer advocates, and our members and supporters.

• Fleet size: Even with recent revisions to pilot policies, concerns remain about whether there’s
enough bikes in the service area to meet demand and help the city answer fundamental
questions about how dockless works in Chicago. We recognize the benefits of lock-to but fewer
companies than expected are participating in the pilot currently. The city should be more
aggressive during this test phase and increase the cap for wheel-lock bikes or eliminate it. There
have been few complaints about bikes in the public way so far and if that changes it would
inform the city’s plans for dockless beyond the pilot phase.

• Data sharing: The city itself and the vendors it regulates should be more transparent with
available anonymized data, including ridership, where bikes are being parked, and trip origins
and destinations. Residents have raised concerns about vendors not meeting requirements to
spread bikes across the service area and there’s conflicting reports about the number of bikes
on the ground. Concerns like these are best addressed by more frequent and transparent
reporting – beyond the mandated report to City Council.

• Bike Access: Chicago should define bike access goals in general, and include docked, dockless
and community-based bike access programs – how are they supporting each and addressing
inequity in bike access through these tools. Vendors should be asked to contribute to
overcoming barriers to bicycling beyond bike parking.

Long-term, the city should set aside a portion of collected fees for new biking and walking infrastructure
on high-crash corridors on the South and West Sides. This could form the basis for an annual bike walk
fund in the city budget to address infrastructure needs on high-crash corridors citywide, with a goal of
$20 million annually.

We feel these concerns and others would be best addressed through additional in-person meetings with
the stakeholder group. We recommend including vendors and stakeholders and holding the next in-
person meeting in the pilot area, where the city could report on data and any updated plans to get
more bikes on the ground.

We appreciate your consideration and are eager to work together to improve bike access and biking in
communities across Chicago.


Ron Burke
Executive Director
Active Transportation Alliance