NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — North Little Rock is gearing up to launch its very first bike sharing program.
Lime Scooters have crowded the sidewalks of Little Rock for almost six months. North Little Rock does not have a contract with the company but you will still find some scooters make it over the river every now and then.
The Mayor’s Office said the new bike share program is a safe option for people to get around. It will be run through a mobility program called Gotcha.
"We've had a few clients nearly knocked over when they walk out our door,” Melissa Thompson said.
Melissa Thompson is the spa owner at PHD in Argenta. She said she is hopeful North Little Rock's new bike share program will help tame riders.
"Bikes are a great way to get around, a little bit quicker and easier,” she said.
Robert Birch with the Mayor's Office says he spent two years trying to find the right company. He said Gotcha comes with good recommendations.
"We went through about six different companies in the interview process. They are actually operating right now on the campus of SAU. They're working great down there,” he said.
The South Carolina based company plans to roll out with about 100 bikes starting in June. The city plans to put 10-15 docking station throughout the city’s wards. Some will also be placed near bus stops, so people can bike the last mile or so home.
“I’m very excited about the bike program more than anything because they do provide that last mile of transportation,” Birch said.
Gotcha's bikes also feature a pedal-assist, electric power boost that Birch said will help bike riders when they get tired. Right now it is unclear how much each ride will cost.
"It's going to be run through their app and you walk up, scan the bike, hop on it and go,” Birch said.
In Little Rock, you will most likely find people riding Lime Scooters on the sidewalk, but in North Little Rock you will only be allowed to ride those bikes on the street.
"They're motorized, and that's what the ordinance is you can't have anything motorized on the sidewalk,” Birch said.
But Birch said he is confident the Gotcha bikes will do well in North Little Rock.
"We're a bronze level biking community in North Little Rock and its something our citizens came to us and wanted,” Birch said.
Gotcha does also offer scooters as well but Birch said there are no talks of bringing in scooters just yet. Right now the city wants to stay focused on bicycles.