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(Friday, July 21, 2017) The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) launched its adaptive bicycle rental program today, called Adaptive BIKETOWN, the first City-sponsored program of its kind in the nation. An extension of BIKETOWN, Portland’s bike share program, Adaptive BIKETOWN is a bike rental service for people with varying abilities and will offer a mix of tandem, hand cycles and three-wheeled bicycles for rent by the hour with the goal of increasing access to cycling.
The Adaptive BIKETOWN rental service will be operated by Kerr Bikes, which is owned by the non-profit organization Albertina Kerr. Kerr Bikes has operated a bike rental service for almost a decade in Portland’s Central City to help fund the non-profit organization’s programs and services to children and adults with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges. The Adaptive BIKETOWN bicycles will be available for rent at Kerr Bikes’ OMSI location along the Eastbank Esplanade. The rental cost is $5 per hour or three hours for $12 for people with disabilities, seniors and those who qualify for a TriMet honored citizen pass. First-time renters must register in advance for a bike fitting, to ensure that the bikes are properly adjusted for the best ride. Those measurements will be saved, allowing for easy walk in rentals for future rides.
The Adaptive BIKETOWN pilot program is a result of more than a year of planning and public input. PBOT staff interviewed individuals about their specific needs, published an online survey that received more than 200 responses, and established a public work group to advise the bureau on the program’s development. PBOT provided $30,000 in funding for upfront program costs, including $14,000 for the purchase of 10 bicycles. Nike has contributed an additional $10,000 for ongoing program costs, including raising awareness of Adaptive BIKETOWN.
“Portland is already known across the country as a destination for bicycling, and I am proud that we will now be a cycling destination for people of all abilities,” said Transportation Commissioner Dan Saltzman. “This program helps everyone experience our city’s excellent bicycle network.”
“Just as BIKETOWN has opened the doors for cycling for people in Portland, I believe that Adaptive BIKETOWN will open those doors even wider,” said Transportation Director Leah Treat. “As a city we have ambitious goals for getting more people to choose bicycling and other forms of active transportation. The more inclusive we are, the more successful we will be in reaching them.”
“I am passionate about bicycling. When BIKETOWN launched, I was disappointed that there weren’t bikes for me,” said Jeremy Robbins, a member of PBOT’s Adaptive Bicycle Pilot Project Work Group which helped advise PBOT on the program’s development last spring. “Working with PBOT and others on developing Adaptive BIKETOWN has been very rewarding. I’m very excited for the launch of this historic project.”
“We are so proud and excited to offer adaptive cycling options at Kerr Bikes with the help of community partners,” said Jeff Carr, CEO of Albertina Kerr. “Portland is a great cycling city. For Albertina Kerr to be able to extend our mission by empowering those with disabilities to participate in this program is tremendous.”
“Nike believes in the power of sport to unleash human potential and build community--for all people, of all abilities,” said Jorge Casimiro, Nike Vice President of Global Community Impact. “This is why we’re so excited to support Adaptive BIKETOWN as part of the BIKETOWN program with the City of Portland and the Portland Bureau of Transportation. Adaptive BIKETOWN will give even more Portlanders and visitors an opportunity to enjoy Portland’s innovative bike share program and experience the joy of cycling in the city.”
The Adaptive BIKETOWN pilot will run through through Fall 2017. Over the winter, PBOT staff will evaluate the program and make any necessary changes or additions ahead of the 2018 season. For reservations and additional information about the program, please visit http://adaptivebiketown.com.
The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) is the steward of the City’s transportation system, and a community partner in shaping a livable city. We plan, build, manage and maintain an effective and safe transportation system that provides access and mobility. www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation
About Albertina Kerr
Since 1907, Albertina Kerr has strengthened Oregon families and communities. Today, we provide programs and services to children and adults with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges, empowering them to live richer lives. For more information about Albertina Kerr, call 503.239.8101 or visit www.AlbertinaKerr.org
Nike believes in the power of sport to move the world and unleash human potential. As a longtime partner with the City of Portland, BIKETOWN highlights the company’s commitment to make Portland even more active, vibrant and innovative. As the title sponsor of BIKETOWN, Nike designed the innovative visual identity for the program’s standard bike which is the highly identifiable orange that is synonymous with Nike. In addition, Nike oversees the design and branding of the system’s logo, stations and physical presence, as well as a select number of limited-edition bike wrap designs.