ValloCycle, the Montevallo Bike Share program, held its official launch Thursday, Oct. 13, as part of the University of Montevallo’s 115th Founders’ Day celebration, themed “Sustaining Montevallo.”
ValloCycle is believed to be the only citywide bike share program in Alabama. The program’s purpose is to provide low-cost transportation for the residents of Montevallo—including UM students—as well as to live greener by reducing carbon emissions and increase quality of life by reducing the amount of motorized traffic on city streets. In addition, the program promotes physical activity and healthy living.
In addition to over 50 used bicycles donated by Montevallo residents and Bob’s Bikes of Homewood, Regions Bank donated 20 brand-new green bicycles to the program.
ValloCycle has put the spotlight on Montevallo businesses by allowing them to sponsor these new bikes. Sponsors provided funds to add baskets to the bikes, which will allow those using them to easily transport purchases from local businesses to their residences. Each of the business sponsors has a sign promoting their business mounted on the front of the basket.
Speakers at the ribbon-cutting ceremony, held at the “Becoming” sculpture on the UM campus, included Montevallo Mayor Ben McCrory, UM President John W. Stewart III and Hollie C. Cost, ValloCycle project director, associate professor at UM and a member of the Montevallo City Council.
ValloCycle Student Coordinator Aaron Traywick also said a few words of thanks before leading a bicycle tour highlighting different UM sustainability landmarks, including the UM Organic Community Garden, the James Wylie Shepherd Observatory, and the Physical Plant.
ValloCycle checkout sites are located at Carmichael Library on the UM campus, at Parnell Memorial Library in Montevallo and at the Montevallo Police Department. Members register at city hall. Individual costs to participate in the program can be paid either through 25 hours of community service or through a fee that averages about $2 per month.
A new bicycle shop will be set up at the University to maintain the bikes, and UM students will have the opportunity to become certified in bicycle maintenance or safety. The safety certification will allow them to provide safety instruction to local schoolchildren.