As part of WABA's effort to get more people to bike east of the river they've been hosting free adult riding classes.
Over the past three weeks, WABA has offered free classes instructing adults on how to ride bikes and how to ride them confidently in the city. But usually whenever the organization advertises such classes, which are enormously popular, “our core contingency follows us,” WABA executive director Shane Farthing said. People from Northwest D.C., or even Maryland and Virginia, fill up the classes rather than the Ward 7 and 8 residents the classes are intended to serve.
So this time around, WABA limited its advertising to posting fliers and other materials around the neighborhoods where the classes were to be held. And it worked: although the turnout was comparatively low, as expected by WABA, the participants were mostly from the neighborhoods.
Saturday’s students were sold on the idea of bikes benefiting them. Buckley said she planned to start riding around Anacostia Park and encouraging a neighbor to join her. Elan Dawkins, 41, said she wanted to learn to ride because “of the easy access” bikes offer. “Most people take the bus here,” she said.
There are other problems to overcome like the lack of bike stores - which WABA is trying to address with mobile bike shops. Bikeshare expansion and use is another issue.
“We see a citywide expansion as something that’s good for us” Capital Bikeshare general manager Eric Gilliland said. “But it is a balancing act between serving existing customers and encouraging new ones.”
you need a credit card to sign up, and even if you take a bike out for a day – daily memberships cost $5 – a $101 security hold is placed on your credit card in case the bike isn’t returned. Such a hold could push some people over their credit card limits.
DDOT spokeswoman John Lisle has said that his agency is currently working on a program that would give bikeshare-specific credit cards to some users.