Transportation Services working on VeoRide placement issues following criticism

Transportation Services working on VeoRide placement issues following criticism

Transportation Services working on VeoRide placement issues following criticism
February 22
10:00 2019

In response to student feedback, UNT Transportation is working with VeoRide to find long-term solutions to criticism about the implementation of ride-sharing services on campus, according to Transportation Services.

One concern some students have expressed regarding VeoRide bikes is where they are left after use. Trista Moxley, senior communication specialist for Transportation Services, said that since the bikes have previously been found in the middle of sidewalks and green spaces, the university actively relocates them.

“All of our Community Service Officers are active in picking up bicycles, both VeoRide and personal bicycles, that are left on the sidewalks or in undesignated areas,” Moxley said. “Additionally, VeoRide employees are very active in rebalancing the bicycles twice a day, gathering them all up and re-placing them in locations where we see the most usage.”

VeoRide, a bike-sharing program, launched on campus last August, replacing Spin bikes. The bike sharing program was started by two then-Purdue University students in 2017 and has bikes in 11 states, including partnering with universities such as Texas State University and Texas A&M University at College Station.

Information technology senior Peter Neal said he is unhappy that the bikes are being put in racks that students see as reserved for them.

“It’s kind of annoying to arrive to campus on my own bicycle and find the bike rack I need is full of VeoRides,” Neal said. “VeoRides are self-locking, have stands that let them park anywhere and are typically not in danger of being stolen, so [they] don’t need to take up space on the already-full racks. I like that we have VeoRides, but the bike racks are not for VeoRide bikes.”

VeoRide currently encourages students to put the bikes in existing bike racks under the FAQ section of their website, but according to the VeoRide Communications Director Linda Jackson, it could be possible for VeoRide-specific bike racks to be built.

“With UNT, there’s a lot of construction going on right now on campus, so any additional bike racks would need to fit into a long-range plan,” Jackson said. “It’s not to say that wouldn’t happen at some point, but we’d definitely have to work with facilities to plan all that in the future.”

Moxley said that due to the benefits of VeoRide bikes, it is likely the bikes will remain a permanent part of the university.

“The VeoRide service offers members of the UNT community a chance to use a bicycle regularly without needing to take it on the bus or adding the cost of purchasing and maintaining a bicycle,” Moxley said. “For as little as $10 a month or $40 a year, students, faculty and staff can purchase unlimited rides, which gives them a huge value without the cost of maintenance or upkeep.”

Neal said he agrees with Moxley about the benefits students reap by having VeoRide on campus, but is looking for some changes to be made.

“I like that we have VeoRides,” Neal said. “It’s just disappointing that rather than co-existing with UNT bicyclists, VeoRide encourages using a free resource they don’t need to park [them] on campus.”

Featured Image: VEO bikes taking space on student bike racks around campus cause students to complain about their necessity on campus. Image by: Abby Esau.

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Brooke Colombo

Brooke Colombo

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