Today, the city of Washington, DC, opened the east coast's largest bike center. It's the East Coast's first such facility; it is the nation's most state-of-the-art; it features a public-private operating partnership; and it demonstrates that our nation's own capital city offers a model example of the kind of sustainable mobility President Obama's Livable Communities initiative seeks.
Bikestation Washington, DC, sits right next to Union Station, a key access point for Amtrak and MARC commuter rail.
In addition, tens of thousands of DC commuters embark and disembark from an adjacent Metro subway stop. And thousands more live within walking distance of the Bikestation. All of the hundreds of thousands of commuters passing through this hub daily can either ride their bikes to the facility and hop on a train; or they can walk or take transit to the facility then hop on a stored bike to complete their trips.
Building the bike center was a project of the DC Department of Transportation's Bicycle Program, headed by Jim Sebastian. The Bicycle Program's Chris Holben shepherded the multi-year project. Operations at the center will be managed by Bikestation, a private company operating 6 other centers. The Federal Highway Administration provided 80% of the new center's $4 million cost, and there are particulars on the Bikestation at its new website.
But, what is really important to America is not what it provides, but what it makes possible.
This is a smart investment in truly multi-modal commuting. It is attractive; it is green; it provides what bicycling commuters need. And it is a model of the sustainable, livable mobility this nation needs now.
Congratulations Jim and Chris--and also to DC Transportation head Gabe Klein, Bikestation's Andréa White-Kjoss, mayor Adrian Fenty, and DC Ward 6 Councilman Tommy Wells (an avid bicyclist and new member of the Bikestation) for helping the DC Bicycle Program see this through to the last mile.