Downtown Milwaukee’s already bicycle friendly Schlitz Park office community picked bike to work week to launch a free bike share program. The tenant bike share program utilizes a fleet of vintage Schwinn Collegiates and Suburbans restored by DreamBikes Milwaukee, the non-profit bike shop on Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, just up the hill from the office park.
DreamBikes will service the bikes once a week and will expand the fleet as tenant demand requires. To borrow a bike, tenants simply leave a driver’s license or another form of ID and return the bike by 5 p.m. A small donation to DreamBikes, while not required, is suggested. If the weather turns bad or there’s a problem with the bike, Schlitz Park will pick up the rider and their rental.
The tenant bike share program is the latest in a series of initiatives Schlitz Park began in 2010 to create a Bicycle Friendly Schlitz Park that encourages tenant wellness and sustainability. The Bike Fed helped by creating a bike plan for the office park. Recent ameneties include some of the best bike parking in Milwaukee with the first corporate installation of 80 state-of-the-art secured bike parking stations and a weather protected bicycle shelter.
They also published a property-specific bike map and hold bicycle commuting safety classes. Additionally, Schlitz Park’s $30 million renovation includes two new fitness centers with showers providing bike commuters a place to change or clean up. One center has opened and the second will in June. Schlitz Park also hosts the Schlitz Park Criterium bike race during the Tour of America’s Dairyland.
“While our efforts have focused on making it easier for tenants to bike to and from work, not everybody can,” explained Schlitz Park developer Gary Grunau. “With our free, same day bike rentals we’re providing tenants the opportunity to ride to a meeting, errand or just get a little exercise. It’s good for them, good for the environment and good for DreamBikes.”
Russell Jobs, manager, DreamBikes Milwaukee, added “More and more cities have bike share programs and until Milwaukee has one, we thought let’s use our bikes to start our own share program with Schlitz Park. This is a great way for us to promote bicycling in the city, as well as DreamBikes and our mission.”
More than 4,300 people work in the Schlitz Office Park, home to major Milwaukee businesses including Manpower Group and Time Warner, and other companies and organizations providing financial services, health care, employment, education, technical and other important services.