1,000 Nike-Orange Bikes Will Make Portland Even Bike-Friendlier
BIKETOWN will be the largest self-secured bike share in North America
The City of Portland recently announced a five-year sponsored bike share partnership with Nike called BIKETOWN. The $10 million deal will include 1,000 Nike-orange bicycles that will hit the streets in July. In a formidable showing of support, Nike’s sponsorship of the program will further inculcate itself into the community it has called home for the past 40 years.
Similar to New York City’s Citibike program, the goal of the bike share initiative in Portland is simple: get active. While the mission to get people moving is similar to Citi, the Portland system will differ in other aspects.
Instead of large kiosks where bikes are checked in and out, BIKETOWN bikes will have all of the needed software and rental technology built in. This will allow riders to park anywhere in a hub location or at any bicycle rack in a system area. BIKETOWN will be one of the largest and most affordable systems in the country with an annual membership costing $10 to $15 a month, and a single ride costing $2.50 for the first half-hour.
Nike is no stranger to cycling. Over the years the company has had various cycling product lines as well as massive sponsorship deals with Lance Armstrong and Livestrong. In addition, Nike has its own bike share program at their expansive headquarters in Beaverton.
It’s no surprise that one of the world’s most recognizable brands will be heading up the graphic design and visual identity portion of the project. The bikes themselves will be “Nike orange” with baskets up front that look like shoe boxes.
With the muscle of the Nike brand behind the project there is no doubt that there will be a significant halo effect for BIKETOWN. Nike’s involvement with the project will add legitimacy to the bike share program and further enhance the already strong bike culture in the City of Portland.
Lead Photo by Felicity J. Mackay, Portland Bureau of Transportation