Alta worked with the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission to provide guidance on the future implementation of a bike share program in the cities of Northampton, Springfield, Holyoke, the Town of Amherst, and the UMass Amherst campus. In 2018, a regional system was launched in all four communities and included 47 stations.
The Pioneer Valley program offers unique challenges to bike share planning and eventual deployment, in that each of the four communities are 5-10 miles apart with minimal transit service and limited connectivity. Alta developed a five-year financial pro forma, provided research to enable selection of an equipment model, and assisted with recruitment of corporate sponsor(s) to fund on-going operations. Alta also developed preliminary site plans for bike share stations for the first phase of the program. This required an understanding of demand for bike share within the four municipalities, working with city and town staff to select the top four preferred sites. Bike share station mock-ups on several of the sites were used in presentations to potential sponsors to build enthusiasm for bike share in Northampton and surrounding communities.