Each month we will introduce you to a Relay team member or ambassador that works behind the scenes. Bike Share is a new concept to many but it’s on pace to becoming a major form of transportation.
This month, Timberley Jones, the Marketing and Community Outreach Manager will highlight Chris Clark, Operations Manager in the informal interview below.
TJ: What do you do daily in your role as Operations Manager?
CC: I’m basically working to support all of the facets of Relay’s daily operations, but I’m mainly making sure we’re continually improving the rider experience and that we maintain the highest bike availability possible. Making that happen takes a team of dedicated and hardworking Technicians working in the shop and in the field everyday of the week to clean, maintain and repair the bike fleet and to rebalance and service the system area. I’m dealing with the hiring, training, scheduling, supplying current needs and forecasting future needs to help keep the team in motion and the system in top shape.
TJ: What’s your “Bicycle” background? Why bike share?
CC: Growing up in Hawaii I bicycled everywhere all year around. I remember that sense of freedom and independence that came with riding my bike to get where I wanted to go, down the block to a friend’s house, over to the park or exploring my community. My first job was delivering newspapers by bike and I rode to school and back almost daily.
As an adult I rediscovered bicycling on a Mountain Bike. Again I was attracted to that feeling of freedom, riding my bike to places that would be otherwise hard to get to. I found new places to explore and new friends to share the adventures with. I felt a part of a community of cyclists.
After moving to Los Angeles, I discovered bike share. bike share gave me freedom from worrying about my bike parked at a rack and the independence to make one way trips by bike.
Chris’ main role is making sure …….Relay Field Tech Team (LEAD IN TO FIELD TECH TEAM)
TJ: Why do you enjoy the bike share industry?
CC: Well, I’ve always felt that bicycling is key to livable and sustainable communities and healthy active lifestyles. I think bike share brings down many of the barriers that might prevent people from trying bicycling and helps make using a bike be more common and normal, as it should be. It’s a healful, easy and economical option for transportation and fun. I’m excited about bike share’s popularity and growth and the awesome support we see from businesses, local community organizations and forward thinking leaders in government. It’s a growing industry powered by passionate and dedicated people working for a better future.
TJ: How are Relay Bikes different from other programs?
The ability to lock up ‘out of hub’ is a feature that enhances the usability and versatility of the system. The Field Tech team will collect those ‘strays’ and return them to hubs. (remember there is a $1 credit for any user who grabs an out of hub bike and returns it to a hub.)
We use the location data from out of hub lock-ups to help guide where new hubs should go. Keep a lookout for new hubs in the near future and if you have an idea for one, please send us a suggestion. Our user’s input is very important for our planning and we are always thinking about how to grow and where we might need a new hub.
Riding a Relay bike makes you feel part of a community and almost always induces a smile and a ring of the bell when you see another Relay rider. These bikes are specifically designed to be safe and easy to ride, low maintenance and tamper resistant. Most Relay rides are 4 miles or less, and we already have many bikes in our fleet over with 500 total miles. Relay overall has 75,000 trips and 170,000 miles logged so far… 7 times around the world! They may not be the lightest or the fastest but they make it easy for anyone to give bicycling a try and they can do most things pretty well for most people.
I’m loving Atlanta and the energy and momentum for growing bicycling here! Thank you for supporting bicycling! #RideRelay