DRYDEN — Lime-colored bikes in the village of Dryden and at Tompkins Cortland Community College have caught the eye of residents, who say they’re interested in the cheap transportation.
The village partnered with a Californiabased company Lime to provide the rental bikes after Deputy Mayor Tom Sinclair and the president of TC3 Orinthia T. Montague met, to bring 60 bikes to the community. TC3 was the first campus in the state to have Lime Bikes, said Finger Lakes Regional Manager Jeff Goldmark.
The idea came about after Sinclair wanted a way to encourage students to visit the village, but to also get there safely and at a reasonable cost rather than walking along the side of Route 13.
“Dryden’s got a long problem with the TC3 students walking from the campus to the village,” resident Gina Prentiss said there are few sidewalks connecting the village to the campus. Students are difficult to see at night.
Kent Ross said he was driving to Syracuse once around dusk and saw students walking along Route 13 and were difficult to see. But as he came home, students on the Lime bieks were easier to see in the dark.
“You couldn’t miss them,” Ross said. “You could see these kids on bikes and it’s much safer.”
Sinclair first saw the bikes in Ithaca and when he spoke with his friend and Ithaca Councilwomen Deborah Molinoff, he remembers her telling him how much of a hit they were.
The bikes, which have been in Ithaca since April, have been used for about 50,000 rides so far. Goldmark said about 85 percent of the rides in Dryden start at TC3.
Other New York areas with Lime Bikes are:
• Watkins Glen
• Montour Falls
“I think they’re just a wonderful addition and once people get used to it, I think they’ll use them more,” Prentiss said.
Prentiss said she and her friend Phyllis Buryn want to ride them along the Jim Schug Trial instead of their normal walk.
Monica Knight and her husband, Pete Panek, have used the ones in Ithaca and are excited for some to be in the village.
“They’re very comfortable bikes,” she said. “I think it’s a great thing if you’re just around the village.”
The bikes have also become a cheaper form of transportation.
“With $1 to ride a bike for 30 minutes it becomes the cheapest form of transportation,” Goldmark said.
And there’s one other major benefit for the village Sinclair said.” One of the reasons that we went with the Lime Bikes is because there’s no cost to the village to have them and no docking system,” he said.
They also offer a program for those who receive federal assistance.
Lime Bikes Finger Lakes Regional Manager Jeff Goldmark said the company is trying to find the right number of bikes to have in the area. Goldmark said his next step is looking to expand into Cortland, Cortlandville, Homer, Corning, Elmira and Horseheads.