Nice Ride Minnesota program will expand in 2011

Transit for Livable Communities will spend $1 million to expand the bicycle sharing program.

Andrew Johnson

The Nice Ride Minnesota bicycle-sharing program has received approval for a $1 million expansion project in Minneapolis and into St. Paul.

Nice Ride Executive Director Bill Dossett said the new funding will add up to 50 new stations for 2011, including eight in North Minneapolis, and will lead to stations in St. Paul as well.

âÄúYou will see stations in St. Paul, but I donâÄôt know how many yet, and I donâÄôt know where,âÄù Dossett told the Pioneer Press.

Nice Ride currently has 65 stations throughout Minneapolis, including 11 on campus.

The funding was approved by Transit for Livable Communities, a nonprofit that works in improving the stateâÄôs transportation. It administers a $25 million federal initiative to better non-motorized transportation in Minnesota.

Since its launch in June 2010 to the close of the season in November, Nice Ride saw more than 100,000 trips taken on its 700 bicycles. Twenty percent of those rides would have been in a car had it not been for Nice RideâÄôs system, according to a survey of subscribers.