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A tale of two cities’ bike shares

A week after Hamilton’s bike share program was barely saved from the axe, Toronto has announced a significant expansion of its bike share service.

 Torontonians will now be able to rent bikes in 20 of the city’s 25 wards, bringing more transportation options to neighbourhoods outside the downtown core.

This year the program will be making a big push in the suburbs, with two satellite Bike Share pilot areas – one in North York and the other in Scarborough. Each will get up to eight new stations. “This announcement is most welcome during a time where residents are looking for different transit methods to get around the city,” Mayor John Tory explained in a statement released Tuesday.

“The expansion of Bike Share ensures that people in all corners of the city have access to different modes of transit and are able to take advantage of programs like Active TO. “In recent weeks the city has made a push to expand cycling infrastructure across the city and shut down certain streets on weekends to allow people to get exercise outdoors while properly physical distancing.

Tory said he’s committed to expanding the program so that everyone can have a “clean, green and convenient way to get around our city. “The expansion of the Bike Share program will see an additional 1,850 new bikes available for rent, bringing the total to just under 7,000. As well, there will be 160 new stations and 3,615 docking points.

Plus, they will be launching an e-bike pilot program later this summer, featuring 300 pedal assist e-bikes and 10 e-bike charging stations. Officials say more details on this program will be released at a later date.

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