City officials were expecting a delay to the start of the season of Rochester’s bike-share program as coronavirus cases started to spread into the country, but Pace, which operates the program, had something else in mind.
Alex Yudelson, Mayor Lovely Warren’s chief of staff, said the city learned several weeks back that Pace was pulling out of the city and other medium-sized markets. Yudelson was told that Pace is “recalibrating” its business plan.
“When they told us that, they assured us that it wasn’t just due to Rochester,” said Yudelson. “They said they had a very successful launch in Rochester, and over the past few years, for a city of our size, we’ve seen incredible ridership.”
Yudelson also said that the city was already considering other options since its contract with Pace was running out this year. But Yudelson said he doesn’t expect to be without a bike-share partner for long.
“We’ve had enough companies reach out over the last couple of years for us to feel really confident that there would be interest in Rochester,” said Yudelson.
He said the city is weighing the pros and cons of using one company versus multiple, and any new version of the program would likely be delayed for public safety reasons because of the coronavirus outbreak.