Earlier this the month, the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada [RTC] quietly rolled out a new program that, while a seemingly small step, is actually quite significant in terms of establishing Las Vegas as a “real” city; ladies and gentlemen, Las Vegas now has a bike share program downtown.
Every single major city from New York to car-obsessed Los Angeles has a bike share program. These programs appeal not only to tourists who don’t want the expense or hassle of renting a car, but also to locals. In New York City, a city that I would certainly be a more than a little bit nervous riding a bike in, the tremendously successful Citi Bike program has provided a new transportation option in a city where the majority of both residents and visitors don’t have access to a car. In Vegas a majority of our tourists are traveling from countries where biking is far more popular than in the U.S.which means that they may be far more likely to rent a bike than a car – especially if they aren’t as comfortable with driving laws etc.
RTC Bike Share is a partnership between RTC, Bicycle Transit Systems [Bike Transit], and BCycle. There are currently 21 stations sprinkled throughout downtown where riders may “check out” a bike for just $4 for a 30-minute ride, $8 for a 24-hour pass [riders can take as many trips as they want within that period] or $20 for a 30-day pass. There are 180 bikes and they can be returned to any RTC Bike Share station.
This is all great and I’m all for it, except one little thing. Have you seen the drivers in Las Vegas? They. Are. Scary. I’m scared to drive in Vegas half the time, let alone share a road with them without a metal box protecting my bod. Downtown Las Vegas currently offers a number of bike lanes and routes and even more are planned for the future, so fingers crossed, this program really takes off. Would you ride a bike in Las Vegas?