After Sponsor Walked, San Antonio, TX Bike Share at a Crossroads

As San Antonio’s leaders work to find new funding for VIA Metropolitan Transit, reduce carbon emissions, and make city streets safer for non-vehicle traffic, it’s important not to lose the most successful mobility development of the past decade: the arrival of San Antonio Bike Share in 2011.

It would be a tragic and embarrassing setback for San Antonio to lose the program after nearly nine years, even as elected officials focus on the Climate Action and Adaptation PlanSA Connect, and a November ballot initiative seeking to use a one-eighth cent sales tax to expand VIA services. Yet that is a very real probability without immediate intervention by local government and the private sector or philanthropic sponsors.

Given the importance of last-mile mobility options seen as key to reducing vehicle traffic, improving air quality, public health, and achieving the City’s Vision Zero goals, bike-share should be seen by the City of San Antonio and Bexar County as an essential tool. Yet the program receives no local public funding.