A look at the top Pronto stations on Capitol Hill — Plus, bike share weather trends

Here's a look at daily trends for ridership compared to temperature fluctuations and rainfall in Seattle from October through February through the full Pronto system. You'll ride in the rain -- but not as much as you'll ride in the sun, of course (Source: Pronto/ Image: CHS)

Here’s a look at daily trends for ridership compared to temperature fluctuations and rainfall in Seattle from October through February through the full Pronto system. You’ll ride in the rain — but not as much as you’ll ride in the sun, of course (Source: Pronto/ Image: CHS)

You can suggest new Pronto stations in the CD and around the city here

You can suggest new Pronto stations in the CD and around the city here

 Above: Images from Pronto’s “#VitaminP” promotion

The last time CHS looked at ridership totals for Seattle’s new bike share, Pronto was but one week old. Preparing for a soggy Seattle winter, we figured it wouldn’t be worth revisiting the stats until summer — also known as September. But thanks to global warming the apocalypse our ever-changing environment, we’ve been inspired by Seattle’s sunny days to dip into the usage tracking for the system to find out where on Capitol Hill customers of the non-profit bike share are riding, how Hill totals compare to usage around the city, and, yes, how ridership holds up when things are cold and soaking.

We also asked director Holly Houser for an update on plans to bring Pronto into the Central District and Yesler Terrace thanks to a $1 million injection from the feds and City Hall. She didn’t take the bait telling CHS there isn’t yet “a timeline” for the expansion.

The datasets for Pronto’s usage were an easier matter. Houser says they are working on getting the statistics into the publicly available data.seattle.gov site but, in the meantime, provided CHS with a few views of the activity.

Here are the top Capitol Hill stations by total trips since the system began operations last fall:

(Source: Pronto)

(Source: Pronto)

You may have noticed that the Bellevue and Pine station was removed earlier this month. Pronto announced the move as a temporary solution to make way for construction in the area.

You can see below how those Pronto Capitol Hill stations stack up against the rest of the city. Seattle Bike Blog breaks down the totals below by origin and destination rankings — Broadway and Harrison, it turns out, is the top place in the city to start a Pronto trip.

Seattle Bike Blog also points out that Pronto is only averaging half a trip per bike per day, a number, SBB says, Pronto will need to grow “to meet system use in other successful bike share cities.”

The system is also working to overcome small technical difficulties. It is working with provider Motivate (formerly Alta) to address an issue with slipping and popping gears. Meanwhile, there are more delays with the helmet vending system. “Due to a delay in delivery of one of the locking mechanism components, the helmet bin upgrade scheduled for February 15 is postponed – likely until the first week of March,” an update from SDOT director Scott Kubly notes.

Even with some of the technical difficulties, a surprisingly dry winter has produced rider totals well above what the system saw in dreary December. Here’s a look at how the trends are playing out this winter for weekly usage:

Screen Shot 2015-02-23 at 1.24.24 PM

If the goal is two trips per day per system bike, Pronto will need to ramp up to somewhere around 8,500 trips per day. A warm — but not too warm! — and dry summer would apparently help.

"Twice?? I've seen the Yellow Unicorn TWICE?! #blessed #VitaminP @CyclePronto #seattle" -- @nottinghamtoday

“Twice?? I’ve seen the Yellow Unicorn TWICE?! #blessed #VitaminP @CyclePronto #seattle” — @nottinghamtoday

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9 thoughts on “A look at the top Pronto stations on Capitol Hill — Plus, bike share weather trends

    • Oh, you cynic, you. ;-)

      How can you call it a failure, when this: “plans to bring Pronto into the Central District and Yesler Terrace thanks to a $1 million injection from the feds and City Hall.”

      Sure sign of success, progressive style — another million in free money from taxpayers.

    • When the bike infrastructure around the stations limits potential ridership to the 5% or so of the population who research shows are willing to ride on crazy, uncalmed arterial streets — yeah, the ridership will naturally be capped commensurately.

      I barely feel safe walking on streets like Pike and Pine — why would I ever ride a bike in a narrow door zone bike lane there?

      We’ll have an amazing network of safe streets around Cap Hill and downtown over the next 36-48 months. I’d expect Pronto ridership to increase as that network is built.

      • “I barely feel safe walking on streets like Pike and Pine — why would I ever ride a bike in a narrow door zone bike lane there?”

        Well then this service isn’t for you. Simple as that.

    • Give it a Spring and Summer, it opened late Fall.Obviously opening when it did just as the weather was turning for the worst on its inaugural year was hardly going to see its best days.

      I have a membership and intend to use it a lot more nice that the weather is improving. The expansion will improve its network effect by providing more access to destinations and opening up to new residents.

      Agreed that better bike infrastructure is needed like a good route from downtown on Pike or Pine and growing a safe comfortable bike route network.

      I’d also like to see some of the stations relocated, I’d like to see a better located station in the heart of downtown at Westlake Park for biking down Pine to catch a bus on 3rd. I’m not a fan of biking up Pike to CH: uphill, no bike lane and super congested.

  1. “Preparing for a soggy Seattle winter, we figured it wouldn’t be worth revisiting the stats until summer — also known as September. But thanks to global warming the apocalypse our ever-changing environment,”

    Don’t quit your day job.

  2. Let’s wait for the first hill streetcar to open before declaring Capitol Hill’s biggest transportation failure. It’s going to be a close one.

  3. Pingback: Pronto’s helmet solution just might work, but can it keep up with growth? | Seattle Bike Blog

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