Inside Wellesley College’s Bike Sharing Program

OXFORD, Conn. — A new bike sharing program from On Bike Share at Wellesley College provides students access to bicycles when they need them, using keys controlled and stored by a KeyWatcher key management system from Morse Watchmans.

The Wellesley College program demonstrates On Bike Share’s approach to simplify bike sharing for university, corporate and commercial locations. The program uses low-maintenance shaft-drive bicycles that eliminate chains and other parts susceptible to weather or vandalism. A unique lock system integrated directly into each bike’s frame allows it to be locked by key to a standard bike rack.

The KeyWatcher system used by On Bike Share electronically secures and releases keys for bicycles in the system to Wellesley College students and staff. Anytime a rider scans their ID card to access a key, the software system logs the transaction to record where, when and how long a bike is used for comprehensive reporting and tracking. The KeyWatcher 32-key cabinet, made of high-grade components and resistant to tampering, is located in the lobby of the public safety building on the campus.

“Wellesley College has a history of piloting and implementing green initiatives to benefit students and the environment,” said Patrick Perugini, co-founder of On Bike Share. “This is another example of them putting sustainability and students first.”

Colleges and universities are increasingly embracing bike sharing as an inexpensive and environmentally friendly transportation alternative, especially as campuses expand geographically and need to connect remote locations. On Bike Share offers users the flexibility to ride and park wherever they want using a system that is cost-effective to deploy and maintain, safe and easy to use. On Bike Share allows users to check out bikes in “four simple steps – swipe card, get key, unlock bike, ride on.”

On Bike Share chose the KeyWatcher Touch system for its ability to share information from one location to another. In systems with multiple bike share locations, a bike can be checked out at one key station and checked in at another. KeyWatcher Touch also offers software flexibility to integrate with a variety of systems. A list of student IDs and card codes can be loaded into the KeyWatcher Touch system, or students can be added using a software interface.

“On Bike Share’s business model of providing easy, automated access to low-maintenance bicycles offers cost and operational advantages for campus environments that want to add a bicycle sharing program,” said Fernando Pires, vice president of sales and marketing, Morse Watchmans. “KeyWatcher Touch provides simplicity and flexibility to introduce key control and accountability without adding to the administrative burden of managing the system.”

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