City promotes bike program
Steamboat Springs — If you see someone riding a bright yellow bicycle around town, it’s likely that the rider is an employee of the city of Steamboat Springs.
The city launched a pilot program Wednesday in which city employees have access to four bicycles for personal or business use.
The city purchased the bicycles from Wheels using Green Team funds for about $1,050. The city’s Green Team addresses environmental issues. Wheels will provide maintenance and parts for free.
The program is part of an effort to encourage city employees to bike, walk, ride the bus or carpool to work. For the past two years, the bikes were available during the month of June; this year, employees were asked to continue their efforts until the end of September. The extension was part of the city’s plans to expand its alternative transportation program.
The bicycle program is meant to reduce employees’ use of city and personal vehicles. They will be perfect for employees who need to go to the post office, the bank or city buildings for meetings, said Gavin Malia, chairman of the Green Team.
“It will minimize their short trips around town by car,” Malia said.
The bicycles are ideal for the city’s program, said Chris Johns, owner and operator of Wheels. They are industrial strength, three-speed “cruisers” that are low-maintenance and fun to ride.
“It was just appealing to me to get involved with the city that way,” Johns said.
Johns said the program will be an advantage to taxpayers because there will be less wear on city vehicles. It also will reduce traffic and provide employees a chance to have fun.
“It’s one of those programs that helps everybody,” he said.
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Steamboat Springs is expected to finish off July with slightly more precipitation than in previous years.