The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

Companies Can Now Pay For Divvy Bike Share Stations Near Their Businesses

By Kate Shepherd in News on Aug 31, 2015 6:04PM


Chicago has taken another step forward in its expansion of the Divvy bike share program with the help of private sector money. The Chicago Department of Transportation reached its first agreement with a private company to purchase a Divvy station last week, and the department hopes that it will be the first of many similar sponsorship agreements.

The real estate developer AMLI purchased a 15-dock Divvy station at Clark and 9th streets and 10 bikes for $56,000. The station is located near two AMLI properties in the South Loop. Even though the station is sponsored by AMLI, it will be operated like all of the other stations in the system, transportation officials said. The bikes and station will be property of the City of Chicago, like the public-funded stations and bikes.

Besides featuring an AMLI logo, the station will have no characteristics distinguishing it from other stations, officials told the Tribune. But officials also said the department would not have been as likely to place the station in the South Loop if not for AMLI's intervention—a wrinkle that makes us wonder how private sponsorships could influence the future of Divvy's expansion, or the department's stated goals of increasing Divvy access to low-income communities and neighborhoods at the southern-, western- and northern-most reaches of the city.

"This partnership agreement with the private sector provides further opportunities for Divvy expansion and demonstrates that proximity to a Divvy station can a be real selling point in today's competitive real estate environment," CDOT Commissioner Rebekah Scheinfeld said in a statement.