LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - A bike share program study and recommendation has come to Lake Charles for the McNeese State University campus.
The Bayou bike share study began last year, looking at a handful of factors including community connectivity and demographic trends. It’s been determined: bringing a bike share program to Lake Charles and McNeese is feasible.
Some students said it would be especially beneficial to those without vehicles.
“I think bike share would be beneficial for international students and a lot of student athletes that I know personally, whenever they come their freshman year they have to live on campus and they’re not allowed to bring their car," Paige Buller, junior at McNeese, said.
“I’ve lived in various cities with no transportation before and it’s been a challenge and exciting to learn how to get transportation and I think it could be very useful," Hannah Pettefer, a senior at McNeese, said.
So, when can we expect to see a bike share program around town? Sara Judson, C.E.O. of the Community Foundation of Southwest Louisiana said it could roll out within the next year, but, there are a few things that need to happen first — like finding a vendor.
“So there will be different parts of the community where people can check out a bike, or return a bike, and that way people from all over the area will have the chance to use them to get from one part of the community to the other; but it will not be the dock-less system that some people have a problem about on the littering," Judson said.
The Vice President of McNeese Student Affairs, Chris Thomas, said he’s excited this could help connect students with the community.
“We want our students to have every opportunity to enjoy the water, and the restaurants downtown as much as anybody. Not having a car shouldn’t keep them from seeing all of the things this city has to offer," Thomas said.
“A lot of students are really into new technology and they see that in bigger cities, and it’s intriguing and they want to do it. I mean I’m from here and I think it would be cool to hop on a bike and go around town," Buller said.
The study also looked at the City of Sulphur, and at this time, it said Sulphur should first focus on a community bicycle and pedestrian plan.