Bike Share Stations Approved for National Mall

5 stations coming to National Mall

Five bicycle sharing stations have been approved for the National Mall to expand the Capital Bikeshare program to the Washington's top tourist destinations.

On Thursday, the National Capital Planning Commission approved plans to install the five bicycle sharing stations on the mall. The panel also encouraged the National Park Service to monitor demand for the bicycles and examine whether additional locations are needed.

The Park Service had been hesitant to allow the sharing service access to federally protected property because of a fear that other stations could encroach on the historic monuments and memorials on the Mall. Each station costs about $50,000 to construct and $23,000 a year to maintain, which also made cost a major factor.

The first stations would be located near major visitor destinations. They include the Smithsonian Metro station, the Lincoln Memorial, Jefferson Memorial, Washington Monument and one between the Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial and Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial.

The stations will each have 23 bicycles, except for the Lincoln Memorial station. It will have 25 bikes.

Capital Bikeshare has over 100 stations and is run by the District of Columbia and Arlington, Va. Capital Bikeshare is the largest such program in the nation with more than 17,000 members, and close to a million trips taken on the system's bikes in the past year.

For a map of all the Capital Bikeshare stations click here.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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