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Electric-assist bikes and e-scooters are returning to Cedar Rapids in June, and the city announces more reopenings

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An electric-assist bike in the NewBo District, Sept. 5, 2019 — Izabela Zaluska / Little Village

Cedar Rapids’ bike-share program is returning for the summer. Bikes and scooters will arrive within the first two weeks of June, the city announced on Friday.

There will be 150 electric-assist bikes and 70 electric scooters around the city, as well as 90 designated bike racks.

The city launched the bike-share program in May 2019 with 50 bikes, and introduced the full fleet of 150 bikes in June. Two months later, a pilot scooter program began. The program closed for the season in November.

At a Cedar Rapids City Council meeting in February, City Planner Sylvia Brueckert said the program “had a total of just over 30,000 rides.” Around 12,000 of those rides were on the scooters, which have been “incredibly popular,” according to Brueckert. The rest of the rides, nearly 18,000, were on the bikes.

The city’s bike- and scooter-share program is managed and operated by VeoRide, a Chicago-based micromobility sharing company. The program operates at no cost to the city, and VeoRide collects its revenue from rider fees. The company is responsible for repairing or replacing the vehicles.

Once the bikes and scooters are set up in June, VeoRide will also disinfect the vehicles and stations twice a day in an effort to help limit the spread of COVID-19. The city is encouraging riders to wash their hands after riding, not touch their face and use hand sanitizer.

To rent a bike or scooter in Cedar Rapids, users need to download the VeoRide app. After creating an account, a user scans the QR code and starts the ride. The app is free.

The bikes and scooters cost $1 to unlock and 15 cents per minute to use. The $1 unlock fee is waived for individuals enrolled in local, state or federal assistance programs through VeoRide Access.

Bever Park in Cedar Rapids, April 20, 2020 — Izabela Zaluska/Little Village

More city reopenings: playgrounds, skate parks, golf courses

Cedar Rapids playgrounds will reopen on Monday, June 1, the city’s Parks and Recreation Department announced.

The city said the playgrounds were disinfected while closed and signage will be placed at the parks as a reminder for individuals to practice social distancing, use hand sanitizer and stay home if not feeling well.

The Riverside Skate Park will also reopen, as will ballfields, basketball courts and sand volleyball courts. Park pavilions will be available on a first-come, first-served basis, but restrooms will still be closed.

The city also announced the Twin Pines Golf Course will reopen on Thursday, June 4. Gardner Golf Course and Ellis Golf Course reopened earlier this month.

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Social distancing will be required in the clubhouse, parking lot and on all golf property at Twin Pines. Carts and push carts will be disinfected after each use. All staff will wear masks, and all payments must be made by credit or debit card.

The various reopenings stem from Gov. Kim Reynolds’ most recent proclamation that allows almost all businesses and public areas to reopen at 50 percent capacity.

There are three types of businesses that remain closed through June 17, unless the governor decides otherwise. These include theaters with live performances indoors, including any indoor performance venue other than a restaurant or bar; indoor playgrounds and children’s play centers; and adult daycare facilities and senior citizen centers.


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