Bike Share Launches Labor Day at Warwick Rail Trail
They say sharing is caring. They also say it takes a village. Warwick Township’s new bike share embodies the spirit of both.
So, what exactly is a Bike Share, and how will it benefit the greater Warwick community? This is where the whole “sharing is caring” thing comes into play. The share is designed to make bicycle riding easy and approachable for the entire community. Think of it like a library for bikes; would-be riders can check-out a bike for a few hours and then return it to its docking station. Signage at the docking station guides users through the reservation process. Thanks to the share, folks who don’t own bicycles can still enjoy riding the rail trail. Others, who do have bicycles but don’t want the hassle of transporting them to the trail, will also benefit.
The Bike Share will be managed by Lititz Bikeworks, a community bicycle shop located at Rock Lititz’s Pod 2. Owners Mark and Rebecca Branle are quick to point out that while they will manage the day-to-day maintenance of the bikes and the reservation system, the share couldn’t have come to fruition without several community players. It took a village!
“Warwick Township Manager, Dan Zimmerman, was instrumental in making this happen. He and the entire Warwick Township administration helped push the project along, most notably by allowing the Bike Share to be housed in an existing structure at the township building,” says Lititz Bikeworks owner, Mark Branle.
From this location, those using the share can head west into the borough of Lititz, or take the trail east through the countryside and eventually into Ephrata. While this is currently the only docking station along the trail, Bikeworks plans to add more when the trail is complete.
“The quality of the bikes is outstanding,” adds Rebecca Branle. “We did a lot of research when it came to choosing the bikes. So many of the metropolitan shares are using bikes with cumbersome frames and heavy locking systems. We didn’t want to go that route. That’s why we chose the Breezer Uptown 8. It’s perfect for riders of all experience levels and provides great safety features, like 26” wheels with puncture protection and reflectivity, a headlight and taillight powered by the front hub, an internally geared rear hub, and a fully enclosed chaincase. There’s even an integrated frame lock.”
While Mark and Rebecca were sure the Breezer bike was the right bike for the share, the thought of purchasing a fleet of high quality bikes was daunting, especially after just opening their new Lititz location. That’s when the team at Rock Lititz stepped in. Along with the upcoming Hotel at Rock Lititz, they donated the fleet of bikes to the community share.
And the giving doesn’t end there. A bicycle repair station was donated as part of a collaboration between the American Heart Association and the Heart & Vascular Institute at Lancaster General/Penn Medicine. The stand is the fourth of its kind in Lancaster County. While the bike share bikes will be maintained and repaired by Lititz Bikeworks, folks riding their own bikes will be able to put air in their tires and make quick repairs and adjustments thanks to the stand.
The bike share will be available for use from dawn to dusk, 7 days a week, starting Labor Day.