NABSA Highlights Shared Micromobility’s Role in Post-COVID Recovery and its Future Beyond

  • The COVID-19 pandemic has further demonstrated how shared micromobility is an essential transportation service that will be an important part of the recovery from the impact of COVID-19.
  • Post-COVID recovery is an opportunity for decision-makers to include bikeshare and shared micromobility in equitable and accessible transportation solutions.
  • Bikeshare and shared micromobility need to be federally recognized as public transportation and receive direct investment at all levels.

May 19, 2020The North American Bikeshare Association (NABSA) is advocating for increased investment in bikeshare and shared micromobility as the industry provides crucial transportation for citizens navigating the COVID-19 pandemic.

For the last decade, bikeshare and shared micromobility have proven to be environmentally friendly, equitable, and affordable forms of transportation. The COVID-19 pandemic has further highlighted how shared micromobility is an essential transportation service that will be a crucial part of post-COVID recovery.

Numerous systems are offering free or discounted rides for residents and essential workers. In both Chicago and New York, the Divvy and Citi Bike bikeshare systems have seen a marked increase in ridership at stations near hospitals and other healthcare facilities. More than 5,500 critical workers in New York have enrolled in free Citi Bike memberships. Healthy Ride in Pittsburgh will start providing free deluxe memberships to essential workers beginning June 1.

Some systems are starting to see ridership increase as reopening begins in some states. According to Bicycle Transit Systems, the operator of Las Vegas’ RTC Bike Share, the system has seen a tenfold increase in ridership – an unprecedented 8-10 rides per bike per day on weekends in May and an explosion in monthly pass holders.

“Shared micromobility has proven to be an equitable form of transportation that’s good for the environment, helps fill first/last mile gaps, transit deserts, mitigates congestion, and promotes physical activity,” said Sam Herr, NABSA’s Executive Director. “COVID-19 is showing policy-makers how shared micromobility can integrate into cities’ public transportation to create complete systems. It aligns with many cities’ goals of increasing transportation choices without adding more cars to the road.”

Some cities are responding to this surge in shared micromobility usage by building out protected riding infrastructure or closing streets to car traffic, allowing for more pedestrian use. While these temporary changes are a step in the right direction, now is the time for decision-makers to create jobs and strengthen communities by investing in and building environmentally-friendly, equitable, and accessible transportation solutions that get people where they need to go. For example, a report by the UMass Policy Economy Research Institute found that bicycle projects create 11.4 jobs for every $1 million invested — 46% more than car-only road projects. Shared micromobility, and the infrastructure that supports it, needs to be included in these solutions.

Additionally, shared micromobility needs to be federally recognized as a public transportation option, and direct investment at federal, state, and local levels are necessary to ensure its continued availability and expansion to meet the needs of residents that need it most.

NABSA is also advocating for bikeshare and shared micromobility recognition in a Surface Transportation Reauthorization Bill. Find more information about NABSA’s advocacy efforts at