LiveWell Colorado is proud to once again sponsor Denver B-cycle, the largest municipal bike sharing program in the country.  If you’re not familiar with the popular red bikes lined up at the iconic “B” stations in and around downtown, the Denver bike sharing program allows people to borrow a bike to get around town for short trips, and then return it at another station.  The Denver B-cycle and LiveWell Colorado partnership is a great example of convergence‚Äîbike sharing is an initiative primarily focused on environmental benefits, but it also gets people active as a way to prevent and reduce obesity.

Denver B-cycle launched last year and the program reported over 100,000 rides with approximately 211,000 miles in 2010. According to a member survey, 43.16% of Denver B-cycle trips replaced car trips, resulting in 312,121 pounds of carbon emissions avoided 9,613 pounds of toxic air pollutants avoided, and 15,868 gallons of gasoline not used. Additionally, the program estimates that these rides burned approximately 6.3 million calories which collectively translates to 1,800 pounds lost.

This year, LiveWell Colorado’s partnership with the Denver B-cycle program will support a unique pilot program that will make bike sharing accessible to low-income Denver residents who may not have a credit card which is needed to ride the bikes.  Denver B-cycle is working with the Denver Housing Authority to issue special B-cycle memberships to interested residents in low-income housing.  Bike sharing will now be an environmentally friendly and healthy choice for more Denver residents who may not have had this option before.

If you visit, live or work in Denver, I encourage you to check out one of the B-cycles next time you need to take make a quick trip across town, want to stretch your legs or just want to experience the city outside the confines of your car windows.  You’ll be supporting the city’s efforts to increase bike commuting and reduce pollution while contributing to LiveWell Colorado’s mission to get more Coloradans active.  Who knew two-wheels could accomplish so much?

Vote for Denver B-Cycle to win the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Healthy Living Innovation Award, by May 31!!