What is the Easyride initiative?
Barriers like distance, topography, and fitness level can discourage individuals from thinking of biking as a viable transportation option. Electric pedal-assist bikes (e-bikes) reduce these physical and perceived barriers to biking, however they are more expensive than conventional bikes, and there are few opportunities for people to try before they buy in settings representative of real-world use cases.
The Easyride e-bike initiative creates opportunities for individuals to experience how an electric bike could fit into their work commute and lifestyle, without the initial financial commitment.
Participants, or their place of work, receive an e-bike on loan for 5 weeks, along with accessories (helmet, bell, lock, charger), and Making Tracks safe cycling training to take to the streets and trails with confidence.
Participants will be surveyed before and after their loan period to explore the integration of biking (electric or otherwise) in participants’ daily life and any changes in attitudes toward cycling.
Why is the Easyride initiative important?
Transportation is responsible for 31% of Green House Gas (GHG) emissions in Nova Scotia.
To achieve GHG emission reductions in the transportation sector, a significant proportion of trips currently made by car will need to shift to sustainable modes of transportation, such as cycling, walking and transit.
Where accessible, walking can replace short trips, and transit is good for reaching common destinations, but cycling offers the scheduling flexibility and range of a car for common daily commutes and errands.
Commonly reported barriers to choosing cycling include: infrastructure, level of fitness, distance, topography, age and perspiration upon arrival. E-bikes help overcome many of these barriers and offer a solution to curb emissions and ease traffic congestion in a fun and active way.
What kind of e-bikes are used for the Easyride initiative?
The Electra Townie Go! 8i Step-Thru was selected for its ease of sizing (fitting people five feet to six feet three inches tall) and riding comfort. The four-stage pedal-assist enables you to keep pace with traffic, receive limited assistance or switch off entirely for a regular bike ride and the Polished Silver makes for a sleek and classy look.
Click here to learn more about the specific e-bikes being used for the Easyride initiative.
E-bikes are fitted with bells, locks, an optional pannier basket, and a helmet is provided. All participants undergo mandatory safe cycling training as part of the program and must be able to ride a bicycle prior to participation.
What does the safe cycling training involve?
The safe cycling training includes 1 interactive Making Tracks online training session (approximately 30 mins) that covers general road safety and knowledge tests. A 2 hour in-person session will cover basic riding skills, hand signals, e-bike specifics and a group ride. This session marks the start of the cohort and participants will take their bikes with them at the end of this session.
What is the 2022 calendar?
Start dates for each cohort are as follows, there are between 4-6 bikes available for each 5-week cohort*.
- May 30
- July 11
- August 22
- October 3
- November 14
*Dates and bike availability subject to change
Are you an employer that would like to try the Easyride initiative for your employees?
Please get in touch to discuss how Easyride can work for your workplace.
To participate in the Easyride initiative or to learn more about current funding options, contact Ashleigh Boers. Payment in full is required to reserve your spot.
Interested in learning more about the Easyride initiative and the 2020 pilot program?
Check out these two reports:
We are grateful for the ongoing support of our Easyride partners: