UPDATE: Since the original time of publication, the A.S. Bike Rental Program has changed their preliminary rental prices to $5 for single-day use and $15 for weekend use. Starting weekly rental price remains at $20.
Associated Students Bike Committee and Business Services Committee will launch its Bike Rental Program this coming Monday, with the aim of providing low-cost bicycle rental services to UCSB community members in need of temporary and efficient transportation.
The Bike Rental Program targets student, visitors and faculty of UCSB, and will be run through the A.S. Bike Shop. Initially, customers will have access to three bicycles for rent, but the supply will increase with customer demand.
The preliminary rental prices are set at $10 for single-day use and $25 for Friday through Monday use. Weekly rentals start at $20 for the first week and $15 for every additional week. In addition, customers have the option of paying in cash or through their BARC account.
Avijit Dalal, the Project Manager for A.S. Business Services Committee, said the idea for the bike rental service was introduced last year, but they have not been able to institute the program until this year.
“The project was started by Eugene Ho, a student last year, but he only completed half of it before going abroad to study this year,” Dalal said. “We finished the proposal this year and got it approved. Our launch date is set for March 10, which is next Monday, so we’re just trying to get the word out right now.”
The program had to clear many legal hurdles before being approved. Vice Chair of A.S. Bike Committee Mac Kennedy said UCSB Risk Management posed the most difficult obstacle in implementing the project.
“The program has been set up to go for awhile, but the main stumbling block has been getting approval from UCSB Risk Management,” Kennedy said. “Bike accidents are fairly common on campus, so there are definitely many liability issues that could arise from renting them out.”
In order to provide a safe rental experience, UCSB Risk Management will require the program to provide a helmet, a light and a lock to every person that uses the service, according to Dalal.
“One of the parts of the proposal was that we’re required to provide helmets, and anything else that can make the experience as safe as possible,” Dalal said.
First-year computer science major Eric Klein said he looked forward to the new program with enthusiasm.
“I think it’s definitely convenient,” Klein said, “and it’s an efficient way for people to have transportation on a short-term basis.”
Photo Courtesy of bikeshop.as.ucsb.edu
A special Thank You to Lee Mudrick at UCSB Risk Management and Kimberly Tapia at UCSB Contracts for promoting safety and effectively consulting with UCSB’s Associated Students Bicycle Committee to enable the launch of our UCSB pilot Gaucho Bicycle Rental Program, for the highest good of all concerned.
Related useful websites:
AS Bicycle Committee http://bikes.as.ucsb.edu
AS Bicycle Committee – FaceBook Page
AS Bicycle Shop
UCSB Transportation Alternatives Program – Bicycle Page
A.S.Bicycle Shop Rental Page http://bikeshop.as.ucsb.edu/bike-rentals/