Bike sharing program a possibility in La Crosse - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Bike sharing program a possibility in La Crosse

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) - How you commute to work in La Crosse could see big changes come 2016.

A group of health officials are discussing the idea of creating a bike sharing program for the city, where riders could rent bicycles from various stations and ride them to corresponding stations within the city. No specific plans are in place yet; the group consisting primarily of members from the La Crosse YMCA, Gundersen Health System, Mayo Clinic Health System is still determining whether or not there is interest for such a program.

Larger bike sharing programs already exist in Pittsburgh, Seattle, Minneapolis, and Madison, but the group said Wednesday it is watching what Rochester, Minn. is doing with its bike sharing program. The Minnesota city similar in size to La Crosse just completed a feasibility study, and could be used as a template for the creation of a bike sharing program in La Crosse.

Bike riding has its environmental benefits, but group champion Matthew Christen said Wednesday that a potential bike sharing program could bring the city a 3 percent to 49 percent economic increase.

The group plans to release an online survey later this summer and hold a public forum in September. Christen said he sees the city implementing the program by the spring of 2016.

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