By GRACE KELLY/ecoRI News staff
PROVIDENCE — After nearly a month of public outrage over JUMP bikes 400-plus percent increase in price — a 30-minute ride cost $9 — the Uber-owned company has backtracked, somewhat.
Local riders can now rent the electric bicycles at a rate of $3 per 20 minutes, with 15 cents per minute after that. This price change is scheduled to go into affect Aug. 12. The price before the mid-July increase to $9 per 30 minutes and 30 cents per minute after that was $2 per 30 minutes and 7 cents per minute after. The service debuted last September.
JUMP’s most-recent pricing recalibration came after local organizations and municipal officials voiced concerns about the July price increase and how it could impact low-income neighborhoods.
“Bike share should be accessible to everyone, but especially to low-income residents. We need more transportation options — bikes, scooters, more bus access — to allow our residents to maximize their potential and live quality lives,” said Sarah Mitchell, board chairwoman of the Providence-based Rhode Island Bicycle Coalition. “If you don't have the ability to get around, life is very difficult.”
Mayor Jorge Elorza said he is happy that JUMP listened to concerns by the City Council and his administration.
"As a city, we are committed to providing residents and visitors with convenient and equitable intermodal transportation options,” he said. “I’m thankful that JUMP took our concerns and those voiced by our communities into consideration to ensure that all residents will be able to continue to affordably enjoy the JUMP bikes in Providence.”