CAT bicycle sharing program set to launch Jan. 24 in Savannah - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Bicycle sharing program set to launch in Savannah

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SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

The First City is keeping up with its name in 2014. It's the first city in Georgia to launch the bike share program.

John Bennett with the Savannah Bicycle Campaign applauds Chatham Area Transit for beginning the pilot program, even beating the capital.

"This is something that's happening all over North America and Europe," said Bennett. "Anytime we can beat Atlanta, we certainly enjoy that, but we're hearing rumors they're getting started.  We hope this program, once it grows and expands will become a model for other people to follow."

The pilot program may have some growing pains. Bill Duty rides his bike from Forsyth Park into downtown almost every day.  He brings up an often asked question of responsibility. "I'm just interested to see how it's all going to work out. I don't like to be negative; I think it's a great idea, but I see chance for theft there and I'm concerned about that."

All bicycles will be equipped with a GPS and you can only check them out through credit or debit, which means they'll have all your information on file.

John Udinsky, owner and manager of Perry Rubber Bike Shop downtown sells and rents bikes too. We asked if he was concerned if the public program would cut into his sales.

"I don't think it's going to be a big issue for us," said Udinsky. He says his shop fits the bike for your needs. "The fit is most important, and just like anything else, it needs to properly sized for you to be comfortable and we want you to enjoy your trip around Savannah."

And that's the main goal for Savannah Bicycle Campaign as well.

"It's all about having a good time getting around that's more environmentally friendly, easier on our streets, and should be a great part of downtown for visitors and residents alike," said Bennett.

There may be some bumps in the road, but as a designated bicycle friendly city, it's a spoke in the wheel of progress.

Bill Duty says he may even try it. 

The two current bike kiosks are located at the Joe Rivers Murray Inter Modal Transit Center on Oglethorpe Avenue and in Ellis Square.Each location will have eight bicycles available for rent.. The cost ranges from $2 per half-hour to membership fees of $20 for a seven-day pass and $60 for an annual pass. 

Get more details from Chatham Area Transit about the program. Check out bcycle.com's website.  

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