Nice Ride to go into hibernation

Thirteen days remain before the Nice Ride bikes go into hibernation:
-- Nice Ride Minnesota (@NiceRideMN) October 17, 2013 The bike-sharing network expects to have all the bikes gathered by Nov. 15, before the plows hit the streets. There's no date set for resuming the program.

SEE ALSO: Nice Ride hits 500,000 trips

The bike-sharing network launched with about 700 bikes at 65 stations, mostly in and around downtown Minneapolis and south to the neighborhoods Lake Street and Uptown. It's still largely a downtown phenomenon but it's growing. This year, the program reached 1,550 bikes at 170 stations. It has expanded into areas -- such as North Minneapolis -- that were left out of the original plans.

In recent years, the gods that produce annual lists of the best biking cities in America have named Minneapolis second only to Portland. Federal surveys conducted in 2012 show that 6.9 percent of the Minneapolis residents bike to work - an increase of about 1 percent from the previous years.

After learning the news, the city patted itself on the back and noted the obvious on its website. That is, "Walking and biking instead of driving has many benefits, including less greenhouse gas pollution, less traffic congestion, less maintenance costs for roadways and most importantly, a healthier population."

Nice Ride is considering expanding throughout Greater Minnesota, possibly in Rochester by 2014. A feasibility study was initiated to see whether the program could thrive in a low-density area.

-- Email Jesse Marx at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter at @marxjesse

More coverage:

- NiceRide's biggest-in-the-nation bike sharing starts tomorrow [Map]
- North Minneapolis may see some Nice Ride action
- Blue Cross drops $1.5 million money bomb on Nice Ride
- Nice Ride Minnesota secures major funding for expansion