Bringing BUG to campus

There is no an option other than the bus for students who are tired of walking all around campus: BUG. Bike Users Group (BUG) is a student-run bike share program that allows students, faculty and staff to rent bikes and take them around campus and off-campus, according to the proposal for BUG. “[BUG will be] a low-cost second generation system,” the proposal stated. Students and staff can join the program online by agreeing to terms of use and signing a consumption of risk waiver that can be found on the Lynx website, said Jesse Simmons, president of BUG and SGA senator. “The waiver is to protect [BUG] from lawsuits and introduce [users] to the terms of the program,” Simmons said. The program will be launched on March 28 and bikes will be located at specific hubs on each campus, he said. Bikes will be outside of Simpson Hall, McAuley Hall and the Bailey/Howe Library, Simmons said. To check out a bike, students or staff must go to one of the hubs and bring their CatCard so it can be scanned by an attendant working at the front desk of that building, he said. “In return, they will get a key that corresponds to a bike and they can take it wherever and return it to any [of the locations],” Simmons said. Whoever takes out a bike is held accountable for it until it is returned to a hub, but all of this is explained in the waiver before users fill it out, he said. Users must return bikes to a hub during the hours of operation, which are between 8 a.m. and 11 p.m., according to the proposal. There are different rates for the bikes if someone wanted to use it longer than an hour, the proposal stated. The first hour is free, but after that it is one dollar an hour and five dollars to keep it overnight, according to the proposal. The rates are to encourage students to return bikes for others to use, not to make profit, the proposal stated. “[Our] vision is expanding to the point where all students can use BUG bikes and don’t have to buy new bikes when going to college,” Simmons said. The bikes will be easy to spot as they will be white with a green trim, he said. BUG was recognized as a UVM club at the end of last year, Speaker of the House Claire Chevrier said. “Last year, as chair of the Student Activities Committee, I met with Jesse Simmons to talk about this idea that he had for starting a bike share program at UVM,” Chevrier said. There was a lot of conversation about how long it would take to make the program a reality, she said. “Jesse’s continued dedication has been extraordinarily impressive and I think every student at UVM will benefit from having this bike share program,” Chevrier said.