A group of graduate and undergraduate students in the city and regional planning program of Ohio State University's Knowlton School of Architecture last week offered their recommendations for expanding the CoGo bike-sharing system.
Of the 27 potential sites for the bike-rental kiosks being funded under a nearly $1 million grant from the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission, about half would be in Columbus, including one in Clintonville.
The rest would broaden the base of the operation into Bexley, Grandview Heights and Upper Arlington.
CoGo was launched in Columbus in 2013 and has 46 kiosks downtown, in German Village and in the Harrison West, Short North, University District and Weinland Park neighborhoods.
"I'm extremely proud of the work the students have done this semester," Chad D. Gibson, lecturer for the program and a senior planning officer in Upper Arlington's Community Development Department, said at the outset of the April 18 presentation at Knowlton Hall.
The effort to find just the right spots for the additional CoGo stations was a "really intense 15 weeks," said second-year grad student Jamie Roberts.
Identifying these potential sites, along with some alternative ones that might be ideal for further expansion, required meeting with "vital stakeholders" in all four jurisdictions, Roberts said.
The concept of people sharing bikes originated in Amsterdam in 1965, she said. It came to the United States in 2009 when a bike-sharing system opened in Washington, D.C.
CoGo customers must check in at stations every 30 minutes or pay a penalty for the service, which is a major factor in choosing sites for expansion, Roberts said. Other factors include proximity to public transit and potential for ridership based on the neighborhood.
Another second-year grad student, Matthew Adair, said Bexley's grid pattern of development made it ideal for placing CoGo stations.
Proposed sites for Bexley were Jeffrey Mansion; East Broad Street and Merkle Road; Bexley City Hall; and the Main Street Gateway at East Main Street and Chelsea Avenue.
In Upper Arlington, recommended sites were the Kingsdale Shopping Center; Tremont and Northam roads; the Shops on Lane Avenue; Mallway Park; and Northwest Boulevard at North Star Road.
In Grandview Heights, students suggested the Grandview Public Library; Grandview and Second avenues; Pierce Field; and Grandview Yard.
The students identified 14 additional Columbus sites: West Fifth and Norton avenues; West Fifth Avenue and Northwest Boulevard; Northwest Boulevard and Chambers Road; Kenny Road and Woody Hayes Drive; North High Street and Kelso Road; Neil and Oakland avenues; Summit Street and Maynard Avenue; Summit Street and East 17th Avenue; Cleveland and East Fifth avenues; North Bank Park; Oak and East 18th streets; Long Street and Taylor Avenue; Franklin Park South and Morrison Avenue; and Olentangy Village.
The Olentangy Village location is the sole Clintonville site, which graduate student Tyler Bender said is not far from a bicycle shop.
"This location sets up for future expansion north into Clintonville," Bender said.