Plans for new Manhattan bike-share company still being finalized, SGA says

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Community members come together on Martin Luther King Jr. Day to help unbox Green Apple Bikes' brand new bicycles in the Green Apple Warehouse in Manhattan on Jan. 15, 2018. (Olivia Bergmeier | Collegian Media Group)

After several delays, the Student Governing Association is still sorting through details to bring the for-profit bike-share company VeoRide to campus.

The plans for the bike sharing program began in late August 2018. While SGA initially hoped to have the bikes on campus by October or November 2018, some difficulties prevented this from happening.

Corbin Sedlacek, local relations director for SGA and junior in accounting, said the contract is still being negotiated and there will not be an established timeline for having the bikes on campus until the contract is signed.

“The process has jumped around quite a bit,” Sedlacek said. “The two biggest hurdles we have had to overcome were to find an office on campus to be the signatory and house the program, and the possible introduction of e-scooters.”

Sedlacek said the cost structure for the bikes will be the same as previously agreed upon and can be viewed on VeoRide’s website. There are two options for payment — students can pay a $50 subscription or pay 50 cents per 15 minutes of use.

Users will use the VeoRide app to scan the QR code on a given bike to unlock the bike and ride it. To end a ride, the user must return the bike to a designated rack and lock the bike. The app will then stop charging the user.

Students will also be able to use the app to locate the bikes nearest to them. SGA said it is still not certain if e-scooters will be introduced to campus.

“We put discussions on hold with VeoRide until we determined what was going to happen with e-scooters,” Sedlacek said. “Right now, both state and local laws surrounding e-scooters are unclear, but I’ve heard that there may be legislation introduced in the Kansas Legislature to clarify things. After a meeting, … all parties came to a consensus that we are going to wait and see what the Kansas Legislature may do and revisit it next year.”

VeoRide will be the second bike-share company on campus, the first being Green Apple Bikes. Green Apple Bikes will still remain on campus and be available for students who don’t want to pay for VeoRide.

Currently, VeoRide is available at the University of Kansas and Pittsburg State University.

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Hi there! I’m Julie Freijat, a staff writer at the Collegian. I’m a freshman majoring in journalism and mass communications; I believe accessible and accurate information is critical for a healthy society. I love insects, I hate poor movie dialogue and my favorite subreddit is r/truecrime.