(Albuquerque – June 1, 2020) – Rio Metro Regional Transit District, the agency that oversees the region’s Bikeshare Program, received word last week from Zagster – the company that implements the service – that they are discontinuing operations in New Mexico.
“We are obviously disappointed in Zagster’s decision to leave Albuquerque,” said Terry Doyle, Director of Rio Metro Regional Transit District, “That said, we also understand that the whole bikeshare and micro-mobility industry has been in flux the past few months, and hopefully, this gives us an opportunity to reevaluate the program and explore how bikeshare might best meet the needs of our community.”
Over the past five years, bikeshare in the metro area has grown from a downtown pilot program into a viable link in the region’s transportation network – offering users that critical first- and last-mile connection between transit lines and urban centers, shopping, and a myriad of other destinations.
But the ever-changing micro-mobility market, which now includes e-scooters, and pedal-assist bikes in addition to bikeshare…has brought about intense market competition and other challenges for service providers in many urban areas to achieve profitability.
“Even before COVID-19 hit a few months ago, our team started exploring new micro-mobility options that could provide even greater value, flexibility, and long-term sustainability for our riders and regional partners,” notes Doyle. “We hope to continue those discussions with the goal of coming up with a plan that better serves those who live here in central New Mexico”.
Zagster was under contract with Rio Metro through September.
“Comprehensive, multi-modal transit service remains a core priority for Rio Metro and our Board”, said Albuquerque City Councilor Diane Gibson who Chairs the Rio Metro Board. “Although it is too soon to say what the next iteration of bikeshare might look like, Rio Metro is working closely with member agencies to plan the next stage of micro-mobility service for our region.”