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Better Tomorrows Hawaii Brings the Kailua Bikeshare Pilot Project to Affordable Housing Residents


Affordable Housing Residents to Benefit from "Borrow a Bike" Program at The Towers of Kuhio Park.

Honolulu, HI, March 30, 2015 --(PR.com)-- Better Tomorrows at Kuhio Park Towers received a donation of 10 bicycles from B- Cycle, LLC that will be made available to The Towers of Kuhio Park residents and staff through Better Tomorrow’s new “Borrow a Bike” program. These bicycles were part of The Hawaii State Department of Health Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion Division’s (CDPHPD) Kailua bikeshare pilot program.

The Kailua pilot began in April 2011 through a contract with B-Cycle, LLC, and consisted of 2 stations and 12 bikes. The mission of the project was to introduce the concept of bikeshare to Hawaii, allowing residents and visitors to experience the ease and convenience of biking for short trips around town. The bicycles were also used for outreach about active transportation and bicycle safety at community events.

While bicycles are the most socio-economic equitable form of wheeled transportation, and while bikeshare programs are proving very successful in cities across the nation, the popularity has not crossed over to low-income communities. “In the research we’ve seen, barriers are focused around the income gap,” said Rebecca Tone, President and CEO of Better Tomorrows. “Along with perceived high cost and lack of credit cards needed to rent the bikes, there is often a lack of bicycle infrastructure in poorer areas; further, there is evidence that folks from some cultural groups may have no experience riding bicycles,” she added.

The “Borrow a Bike” program allows the resident population to get used to riding bikes with a series of fun, educational safety training programs. Once a resident feels comfortable enough to ride in traffic, they will be able to borrow a bike to go to the store or any nearby locations. When Bikeshare Hawaii launches its state-wide bikeshare program in 2016, with the initial service area spanning from Honolulu’s Chinatown district to Waikiki, this population will be more aware of bicycle use and the benefits of riding Tomorrows is partnering with Kalihi Valley Instructional Bike Exchange (K-VIBE), a community bike shop, run by Kokua Kalihi Valley, where youth learn how to build bikes earn bicycle ownership through community volunteering. K-VIBE is located a short distance from the Towers and youth in the program will help keep the bikes maintained. “The bike share bikes are quite different than your usual run-of-the-mill bike,” said Jared Christenot, K-VIBE program director. “The kids had to learn different skills to work on these bikes, and a number of them are now very proficient,” he added.

About Better Tomorrows: Better Tomorrows supports youth, adult, and senior residents of affordable housing communities and their neighboring communities. Housed directly in the communities it serves, Better Tomorrows' wrap around case management and community programming are tailored to meet the specific needs of each community it serves. All of Better Tomorrows programs are focused on fostering economic stability, healthy lifestyles, educational success, and strong communities. For more information on Better Tomorrows healthy lifestyles programming, please visit http://www.bettertomorrows.org/what-we-do.

For more information about the Bikeshare Hawaii system, please visit www.bikesharehawaii.org.

For more information on this news release, please contact: Andrew Kucer, Vice President of External Affairs at Andrew.kucer@bettertomorrows.org or at (856) 452-0251
Contact Information
Better Tomorrows
Andrew Kucer
856 452 0251
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www.bettertomorrows.org

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