As you all know by now, the Evanston Bike Share program is something we’re working hard to get underway. In order to make this as beneficial for Evanston residents as possible, we need to hear what residents think of the models we’ve taken a look at. If you have any interest in getting a closer look at the models below and providing your input, please show up to a presentation by Northwestern students at the Civic Center on 2100 Ridge Avenue, Evanston, IL 60201 this Monday, March 3, 2014 at 6 pm in room 2403.
The Equal Spread model considers a wide coverage in an effort to keep the spread equal on all factors. In the different locations this model would move the stations closer to a train stop or major employer if it is within a reasonable radius. Some consideration still needs to be taken into account for which location would make the most sense in south Evanston because we need a connection with Chicago’s north side within a 30 minute bike ride. Something the public could comment on is whether or not it would make sense to place a location near Saint Francis Hospital close to the intersection of Custer Street and Austin Avenue. This model would also include bike routes on the maps for individuals to identify what their best options are. The distance between these stations is less than optimal.
The second model, North Evanston, is focused on the north side around the intersection of Ridge and Central. One considerable challenge would be managing the distance between south Evanston and Chicago’s north end. One popular location here would be the Church and Dodge intersection.
The Downtown & South model would better address the connection between Chicago and Evanston by placing stations in Downtown Evanston and the south end of Evanston. This is closer to the extension into a regional transit model that was originally envisioned when bringing Divvy to Evanston.
If residents would prefer a model that focuses on local population and employment trends, southwest Evanston makes a strong case, particularly near the Levy Senior Center at James Park. This Local Employee model would be most effective if hospital employees were surveyed to see where they are coming from so that stations could be placed to accommodate them. It would also help if these stations were placed in areas to support economic development efforts.