NEW ORLEANS (Aug. 23, 2021)
– After being missed for the past year, New Orleanians will see Blue Bikes rolling on city streets again starting this week. Blue Krewe, the local, community-based nonprofit that operates and manages the bikeshare program, is relaunching the program with a fleet of 504 pedal-assist e-bikes. Starting this week, Blue Krewe is placing Blue Bikes at hubs throughout the city.
"Blue Bikes returning to city streets means New Orleanians once again have a healthy, environmentally friendly, affordable way to get to work, to medical appointments or to just have fun," said Dr. Jeremy Wigginton, a medical director with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana, Blue Bikes’ title sponsor. "And with the ongoing COVID-19 surge, bikeshare is a more socially distanced form of transportation than riding inside a vehicle with others. This will help people get around easily while staying safe and taking precautions to slow the spread of COVID-19, particularly the highly contagious Delta variant.”
The initial fleet will be placed within the bikeshare program’s service area
. Residents, tourists or visitors who have signed up for Blue Bikes can begin riding or sign up to use the bikeshare program.
“We are excited to see Blue Bikes returning to our streets sooner than expected, to give our residents and visitors more affordable transportation options,” said Mayor LaToya Cantrell. “I want to encourage everyone to get out and enjoy the outdoors over Labor Day weekend, and spend some time bicycling around our city.”
How to Ride
To ride Blue Bikes, download the Blue Bikes Nola app, which is available in the App Store and Google Play. People can choose from different ridership plans and payment options to use Blue Bikes:
The Pay As You Go option costs 15 cents per minute and includes a $1 unlocking fee. There is no ongoing commitment required for this option. You will be charged only for the time you use (per minute).
The Monthly Membership option costs $25 and lets you unlock a Blue Bike without a fee anytime you ride. Monthly memberships include up to an hour of free ride time per day, which you can use in multiple trips.
Through the Blue Bikes for All program, New Orleans residents who qualify for Medicaid or Louisiana Purchase (S/NAP) can get a reduced ridership plan of $4 per month.
To learn more about the Blue Bikes pricing and rider options, visit BlueBikesNola.com
Ready to ride now? Blue Krewe is looking for volunteers who will ride a Blue Bike to a hub in any part of the service area. The initial service area includes parts of the Lower Garden District, Central City, the Central Business District, the French Quarter, the Marigny, the Bywater, the 7th Ward, Tremé, Mid-City and the lower section of City Park. This volunteer-driven effort will help get bikes into the community faster.
If you would like to volunteer as a rider, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org
. Blue Krewe will arrange times for you to meet at the Blue Bikes warehouse to get a bike.
About Blue Bikes 2.0
Blue Bikes first launched in 2017 and was in operation through spring 2020. During that time, residents and visitors embraced Blue Bikes as a valuable community asset. Bikeshare offered a healthy, environmentally friendly and accessible transportation option to move around the Crescent City.
During its first years of operation, the Blue Bikes program was highly successful, with more than 66,000 riders taking over 700,000 trips! Within the first two years, Blue Bikes were ridden over 1 million miles, constituting a substantial carbon offset for the region and generating a gasoline cost savings of nearly $700,000. Trips taken and miles ridden jumped up each year of Blue Bikes’ operation, as more people embraced the program.
The original Blue Bikes system shut down in spring 2020 following ownership changes when the previous out-of-state corporate operator ended bikeshare operations in the New Orleans market.
However, recognizing the importance of Blue Bikes for New Orleans and the need for local control of the city’s bikeshare system, local bikeshare enthusiasts - including former Blue Bikes staff, bicycling and walking advocates, philanthropists and community healthcare organizations - came together to form Blue Krewe last year.
“The creation of Blue Krewe and the relaunch of Blue Bikes would not have been possible without the critical start-up funding and fiscal sponsorship from the Greater New Orleans Foundation, along with the ongoing support of our partners - Bike Easy, our title sponsor Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana, and the City of New Orleans,” said Geoff Coats, the Chief Executive Officer of Blue Krewe. “Our team is thrilled to relaunch the Blue Bikes program under the management of a locally controlled and community-based non-profit that will be able to ensure the long-term sustainability of an equitable bikeshare program here in New Orleans.”
For more information and timely updates on the Blue Bikes 2.0 launch, visit BlueBikesNOLA.com
or follow Blue Bikes on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @BlueBikesNOLA.
About Blue Krewe
Founded in New Orleans in 2020, Blue Krewe is a local, community-based non-profit that manages and operates the Blue Bikes program. Recognizing the importance of Blue Bikes as a healthy, equitable, and environmentally-friendly transportation option, local bikeshare enthusiasts - such former Blue Bikes staff, biking and pedestrian advocates, philanthropists and community healthcare advocates - came together to form Blue Krewe. Here at Blue Krewe, we are committed to our mission to provide the Greater New Orleans region with equitable shared micro-mobility solutions that are rooted in and supportive of our community.
The Greater New Orleans Foundation provided critical start-up funding and fiscal sponsorship for Blue Krewe. Blue Krewe's partners include Bike Easy, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana and the City of New Orleans. To donate, volunteer or learn more visit www.BlueKrewe.org.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is committed to our mission to improve the health and lives of Louisianians. Founded in New Orleans in 1934, we are a tax-paying nonprofit health insurer with offices in every major region to serve our customers. We have been recognized for the past three years as an honoree of The Civic 50, named by Points of Light as one of the 50 most community-minded companies in the United States.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. We are a private mutual company, owned by our policyholders, with an independent Louisiana Board of Directors and no shareholders. We invite all Louisianians to visit our website at www.bcbsla.com or talk to us on social media.
About the Greater New Orleans Foundation (GNOF)
With roots extending over 90 years, the Greater New Orleans Foundation has been connecting generous people to the causes that spark their passion. As one of the most trusted philanthropic organizations in the region, we work every day to drive positive impact through philanthropy, leadership, and action in our thirteen-parish region. In addition to grantmaking, we convene people, resources, and ideas to create intelligent strategies and solutions to meet our region’s greatest challenges. We are proud to serve as a vocal civic leader with our partners to ensure a vibrant, sustainable, and just region for all. Learn more at www.gnof.org.