By Darryl Holliday on November 6, 2013 4:18pm | Updated 2 hrs ago
CHICAGO — Divvy is expected to become North America’s biggest bike-sharing program after 175 stations are added next year.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office on Wednesday announced a $3 million federal grant that will fund the Chicago Transportation Department’s bike-sharing expansion. According to city officials, 75 new stations will be funded through the grant, on top of 100 already slated for next year.
The expansion will rank Chicago above New York City, at 331 stations, and Montreal, at 434 — making the city’s bike-sharing program the fifth-largest in the world.
Since its launch, residents and visitors have taken 650,000 trips on Divvy bikes and collectively pedaled more than 1.5 million miles.
Divvy has sold more than 125,000 daily passes and 11,000 annual memberships since its launch in June. The $75 memberships allow unlimited rides for 30 minutes at a time.
Still, the number of annual memberships in Chicago greatly lags the number in New York after its program launched in May. Citi Bike has more than 90,000 members. Members pay $95 for unlimited rides of up to 45 minutes.
Riders have logged 8.7 million miles in New York.
Five “rebalancer” vans are deployed across the city during morning and evening rush hours and an overnight shift. Each van can carry up to 28 bikes, and Divvy moves 1,000 to 1,300 bikes per day, according to Elliot Greenberger, a Divvy spokesman.
Greenberger said bikes will be available throughout the winter, but the number of bikes will be reduced to match ridership.