A resident tests a bicycle in Portland from the Nice Ride bike sharing system in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Photo by BikePortland.
Fran Spielman of the Chicago Sun-Times reports today that the selection process to select a bike sharing manufacturer and operator (“vendor”) is “tainted”, according to Bike Chicago owner Josh Squire. You may be more familiar with the name Bike & Roll, which operates many bicycle rental facilities on the lakefront, as well as the Millennium Park Bike Station (McDonald’s Cycle Center) on behalf of the city.
The complaint centers around several alleged improprieties and failures to follow the city’s own procurement rules: possible discussions that commissioner Gabe Klein had with Alta Planning + Design president Mia Birk at the gala both John and I attended back in October 2011. (I must note that Alta Planning and Alta Bicycle Share are separate corporations.) The complaint also regards the quick turnaround time for the first request for proposals and that a second request for proposals canceled the first and without explanation.
Full disclosure: Bike and Park is a sponsor of Grid Chicago and is affiliated with Bike Chicago and Bike & Roll.