The journey of the Bull E-Bike Pilot is continuing to make progress in preparation for its debut in the late Spring of 2022. Over the last few weeks, the team has been fortunate to conduct interviews with e-bike libraries worldwide, including Bicycle Colorado of Denver, Colorado, and See Change of Canberra, Australia. Team member Doug Bright led the conversations and learned vast information about the day-to-day operations of e-bike libraries. His research findings from the discussions indicated, “while e-bike libraries are still in their infancy, there is still room to grow and develop while learning from the incredible work of others.”
After the team finished conducting interviews with other e-bike libraries, we began expanding our knowledge of bike insurance, bike liability, and risk management by corresponding with specialists, including lawyers, micro-mobility companies, and insurance agencies. The information we gathered has helped facilitate the hiring process for the project’s bike mechanics. Pedego Electric Bikes located in Durham will be assessing hundreds of e-bikes, identifying the best, and completing in-depth needs assessments for each bicycle. The team hired another bike mechanic this month to work on the e-bikes throughout the pilot project. The newly hired part-time mechanic has over 15 years of bike mechanical work experience and will ensure each e-bike is safe and road-ready.
Over the last few weeks, the project’s team accepted bids for proposals to support our outreach initiatives to increase equitable engagement. We received multiple dynamic proposals from well-qualified equitable engagement organizations across North Carolina. We conducted interviews in the first week of April. The team has deliberated on all the interviews and looks forward to working with the selected consultant, Bike Durham. Bike Durham is a sustainable transportation and advocacy organization founded in the City of Durham. The Bike Durham Equitable Engagement Team consists of John Tallmadge, the Executive Director of Bike Durham, Dr. Anthony Patterson, a Professor and Researcher at North Carolina Central University, and Pablo Robles, a Community Organizer and Engagement Specialist. This group brings an innovative and community-driven approach and recognizes the importance and integrity of representing and researching an equity-based project in Durham.
Our team is also excited to welcome Arleigh Greenwald, founder of Shift Up Media. Arleigh will work as the videographer for this project producing a series of videos for pilot participants and the public. Next month, we will begin creating the first of many videos to enhance education and safety techniques for participants using the e-bikes.
The team will continue all of their research aspects to expand their knowledge on e-bikes, focusing on the tech components, risk management, and liability. In the coming weeks, the team will begin operating in a new capacity to start the work of refurbishing the e-bikes and discussing strategy with the selected equitable engagement specialist team.