WAUSAU, WI (WSAU) - Bus cycle, bus cycle... Just maybe, some Wausau area riders will be changing the lyrics of an old song shortly. That's because the two modes of transportation are being put together this summer. Metro Ride will be installing bicycle racks on city buses.
Metro Ride Transit Director Greg Seubert says the idea started with city planners about three years ago. “The city Planning Department offered to write a grant to fund bike racks on all of our buses, and it has wound through the process and we now have a grant in place. We are now looking to get some price quotes and get some racks.”
Bicycle racks on buses are common in large cities and cities with a significant college population. Seubert says he was skeptical of bike racks on buses years ago, but has been convinced it is now a good idea. “I’ve been talking with my peers. They do seem to be very popular with folks. It allows folks to use the transit system in ways they otherwise would not and it extends our reach.” He says the bike racks can be handy for someone going to Rothschild, Schofield, or Weston, where they don’t have service every hour. With the racks, a rider can take the bicycle to an appointment on the bus, and ride it home if they don’t want to wait for the next bus.
Seubert says the bike racks could be installed by mid summer on all of the city’s fixed route buses. “It should happen pretty shortly. We hope to have price quotes for the next Transit Commission meeting which will be June 27th. Hopefully, they will award to one of the vendors, and I suspect we would have them in place within 30 days after that.”
The racks are commercial-grade and are more durable than the bicycle racks used on cars. Each one costs about 900-dollars.
Bike racks on city buses have been successful in many communities including Madison, Milwaukee, and nearby Stevens Point.