October 10, 2017
By Kenny Ryan
Sloan Schneiter on a VBike.
DALLAS (SMU) – Take a walk along the tree-lined sidewalks of SMU and you’re liable to encounter something new this month – yellow bikes parked along the way without any apparent lock or key.
They’re called VBikes, and they’re here to provide SMU students and visitors a new and healthy way to transit across campus.
“The idea of a bike share program on campus as an alternative means of transportation fits well with the portfolio of services we offer, such as the shared car experience with Zip Car says parking and ID card services director Mark Rhodes. “Now we have a bike share experience with VBikes, too.”
The bikes are parked at various locations on campus, dependent on where the last rider left them. To take a ride on a VBike, prospective riders must first download the free app on their smart phones. Then, when they find a bike on campus, they can activate the bike through the app via Bluetooth to spring the internal lock. Rides are $1 an hour, chargeable to a credit card.
The app can also be used to locate available bikes through a Google Maps-like function that displays current bike locations.
“I have my own bike, but I have a lot of friends who didn’t think to bring one, so they’ve been riding these VBikes around campus because they’re so much faster than walking,” says freshman accounting major Sloan Schneiter. “You can park them anywhere. Bikes are healthy, fast, and definitely a good mode of transportation.”
A nationally ranked private university with seven degree-granting schools, SMU is a distinguished center for teaching and research located near the heart of Dallas. SMU's 11,000 students benefit from small classes, research opportunities, leadership development, international study and innovative programs. The University is strengthened by its partnership with the Dallas region, a global center of commerce and culture. SMU students, faculty and alumni are changing the world through their chosen fields, civic engagement and service to society.