Shorewood — The Bublr bike-share stations that were introduced to downtown Milwaukee last week will eventually make their way up to Shorewood due to a federal grant approval.
Midwest BikeShare, the nonprofit operator of Bublr Bikes, expects to have 10 bike-sharing stations installed in downtown Milwaukee by the end of the month. The program is expected to offer an additional 25 to 35 stations with 200 to 300 bikes next year, eventually expanding to 100 stations with 1,000 bicycles across Milwaukee, Shorewood, West Allis and Wauwatosa in the next three to four years.
Kevin Hardman, the launch director of Bublr Bikes, said he is introducing the bike share program to other nearby suburbs where residents have expressed interest. Customers will be able to rent bikes from automated kiosks for $7 per day or $20 per month and return the bikes to any station.
"All of the places we've touched on are dense communities, so this offers another easy and convenient transportation choice," he said. "If you look at the north end of Oakland Avenue, for example, where parking is at a premium, bike sharing is wonderful because it gives people a choice that didn't exist before."
Shorewood will be home to nine bike share stations as proposed in a $398,607 federal grant that was recently acquired through the state's Department of Transportation. The federal grant covers 80 percent of the cost of the Shorewood stations, while the remaining 20 percent is borne locally.
Midwest BikeShare has so far raised $3 million to help cover the 20 percent local funding share and underwrite operational costs. Hardman said the program is working to raise an additional $3 million in private funds over the next three to four years to reach its goal of 1,000 bicycles.
Shorewood's grant application proposes nine bike share stations within village limits. Shorewood officials have mapped 12 potential station locations, with a priority on Oakland Avenue and Capitol Drive.
Potential locations include Oakland Avenue at Edgewood Avenue, Capitol Drive, Lake Bluff Boulevard and Kensington Boulevard; Capitol Drive at Lake Drive, Maryland Avenue and the Milwaukee River; Lake Drive at Edgewood Avenue and Lake Bluff Boulevard; Downer Avenue at Edgewood Avenue; and two locations near Estabrook Park.
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