• Maker of bikes for Seattle's bike share program files bankruptcy

    By: David Ham


    Puget Sound Bike Share said it is working on a "Plan B" in case the manufacturer of 500 bikes for its new bike share program can't deliver.
    The bike share program is scheduled to launch in Seattle by August.
    The program would allow users to pay a daily fee of about $7 or an annual fee of $75 to rent bikes from kiosks and return them at other kiosks around the city.
    "Seattle's kind of a big city and on the cutting edge of everything, so it seems like that should be happening now ahead of other people," said Brooke Elliott.
    Tom Fucoloro of the Seattle Bike Blog agrees.
    "It's almost getting to the point if your city doesn’t' have it they'll think you're falling behind," said Fucoloro.
    Holly Houser of the Puget Sound Bike Share program said she is hopeful the financial troubles of bike maker PBSC won't impact the planned launch.
    She's working with Alta Bicycle Share of Portland, the company that will manage the kiosks and implementation of the program, to make sure bikes are ready in time.
    "Everyone is kind of hopeful fingers crossed that everything turns out all right," said Fucoloro.
    PBSC said on its website that all orders for 2014 will be fulfilled but there were no promises on the site for any orders put in afterwards.
    Puget Sound Bike Share has not signed a contract to order the bikes yet.
    The non-profit received $1.75 million in federal and state grant money for the program. It hopes to raise about $2 million in private funding.
    Potential bike share users hope the bankruptcy doesn't cause any delays.
    "I don’t have a bike right now so it's good if you can't afford to go out and buy an expensive bike to be able to rent one, awesome," said Elliott.

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