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Seattle launches bikes share with 500 bikes

Published October 14, 2014

SEATTLE (BRAIN) — Pronto Cycle Share, offering 500 bikes across 50 stations in Seattle, went live Oct. 13, providing residents and visitors a fleet of bikes to get around the Puget Sound. Pronto is the first of its kind in the Pacific Northwest and launched following an inaugural ride hosted by Seattle Mayor Ed Murray.

Users can rent seven-speed bright green commuter bikes from solar-powered docking stations in the University District, Eastlake, South Lake Union, Belltown, Downtown, Pioneer Square, the International District, Capitol Hill and First Hill. In addition to bikes, riders can check out a helmet and return it to any docking station at the end of their ride. Helmets are picked up, inspected and cleaned before returning to circulation.

Annual members get a voucher to redeem a free Pronto helmet from a number of retail stores. Annual memberships cost $85 to $125. Members can take an unlimited number of rides up to 30 minutes for free, and incur fees for longer trips. Short-term users can purchase one-day and three-day memberships for $8 and $16 respectively from any docking station.

"We are thrilled to introduce bike share today to one of the nation's most zealous cycling communities. This is a service Seattle residents and transportation advocates have long asked for and we're excited to answer that demand today by rolling out Pronto Cycle Share," said Holly Houser, executive director of Proto Cycle Share.

Pronto is backed by a combination of public and private funding, including grants from the King County Department of Transportation and the City of Seattle, along with corporate sponsors. Alaska Airlines is the system’s presenting sponsor. Other sponsors include Seattle Children's and Group Health, REI, Vulcan and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

Pronto is owned by Seattle-based non-profit Pronto Cycle Share, and is operated by Alta Bike Share based in Portland, Oregon. Alta currently operates Capital Bikeshare in Washington, D.C., Arlington and Alexandria, Virginia; Hubway in the Boston-metro region; Melbourne Bike Share in Melbourne, Australia; Bike Chattanooga in Chattanooga, Tennessee; Citi Bike in New York City; Divvy in Chicago; CoGo in Colombus, Ohio; the Bay Area Bike Share in the Bay Area, California; and Bike Share Toronto in Toronto, Ontario.

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