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Detroit bike-sharing program launches with Kresge support


A bike-sharing program developed with support from businesses and foundations including Kresge was formally launched in Detroit as part of larger efforts to improve transit and personal mobility in the city.

Bikes are available 24 hours a day, every day of the year (except during severe weather) through MoGo, a program run by the nonprofit Detroit Bike Share, which is affiliated with the Downtown Detroit Partnership. Some 430 bikes are spread across 43 stations located in 10 neighborhoods around the city.

To use the system, customers purchase a pass online, with a smartphone app or at a station (cash payment and flexible payment options are available). After choosing a bike, they can take as many short rides as they want while their pass is active. They can return a bike to any station by sliding it into an empty dock.

Daily, monthly and annual passes are available, as well as a special $5 access pass for registered members of some state benefit programs. Businesses and community groups can purchase annual passes for employees and members at discounted rates. The Cyclefinder smartphone app provides information on the number of available bikes and docks throughout the system, and helps users time their rides so as not to exceed the time they purchased. More details, including prices, are available on the MoGo website.

Work on the system began in 2013 when Wayne State University, in partnership with several business and nonprofit stakeholders, hired consultants to evaluate the feasibility of a public bike share system. Kresge supported the system’s development with a $250,000 grant approved in 2015, complementing funds from other foundations, state and federal agencies.

“As with the recent launch of the QLine light-rail system, MoGo marks an important mobility advance for the city of Detroit,” said Wendy Lewis Jackson, managing director of The Kresge Foundation’s Detroit Program. “Increasing mobility and mobility options strengthens the connections within and between communities; it fosters development and opportunity. And as with the QLine, the launch marks a stepping stone to boarder, more robust transportation for the neighborhoods of Detroit.”