Following on its commitment to becoming more bike friendly and making continued bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure investments, Howard County, through the Office of Transportation and the Department of Planning and Zoning, as part of a joint effort with Columbia Association, was awarded a Maryland Bikeshare Program Grant to conduct a study of the feasibility for implementing a bike share program.
The study determined that a recreational and health-oriented bike share system could be implemented in Howard County in the near-term with a transition to more transportation focused system as as the County’s bicycle infrastructure matures and develops. This finding was based on three primary indicators of bikeshare demand.
- There is a moderately interconnected network of trails and pathways throughout the most populated areas of the County which are mostly used for recreational purposes.
- While the pathway system does not currently have a strong wayfinding system, it is already being improved. A bike share system would further enhance visibility and overall awareness of cycling in Howard County.
- There are a significant number of annual visitors in some parts of the County including Downtown Columbia and a good number of lakes and parks within Howard County. These visitors would be likely to use a bike share system to enhance their experience.
The study has three primary sections, presented below.