Pronto Cycle Share

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Pronto Cycle Share
Pronto Cycle Share logo.svg
Pronto station in front of Frye Museum 01.jpg
OwnerPuget Sound Bike Share
LocaleSeattle, Washington
Transit typeBicycle sharing system
Number of stations50[1]
Chief executiveHolly Houser, Executive Director
Began operationOctober 13, 2014 (2014-10-13)
Ended operationMarch 31, 2017 (2017-03-31)
Number of vehicles500[1]

Pronto Cycle Share, branded as Pronto!, was a public bicycle sharing system in Seattle, Washington, that operated from 2014 to 2017. The system, owned initially by a non-profit and later by the Seattle Department of Transportation, included 54 stations in the city's central neighborhoods and 500 bicycles. Motivate (formerly Alta Bike Share) operated the system and Alaska Airlines was the program's presenting sponsor.[2]

Pronto launched on October 13, 2014, but ran into major funding issues in 2015 after the City of Seattle put any further fundraising on hold while awaiting council approval to purchase the system. The City of Seattle finally bought the system for $1.4 million on March 14, 2016, but by this time, the system had become insolvent due to less than expected ridership, revenue and lack of funding.[3] It was originally planned to be replaced with a new bikeshare system using a vendor with electric bicycles,[4] but the new system was cancelled in January 2017.[5] On March 31, 2017, Pronto shut down operations and disassembly of stations began, with the bicycles being offered to other cities that wish to start a similar system.[6]

Membership and fees[edit]

Map of stations

Use of the Pronto system was based on either annual memberships ($85) or short-term passes of either 24 hours ($8) or 3 days ($16).[7]

Helmet law compliance[edit]

Pronto Cycle Share was the first public bicycle sharing system in the United States to operate where a bicycle helmet law applies to cyclists of all ages.[8] To address this, the system installed helmet dispensers at each kiosk, along with a collection bin for used helmets. At the system's launch in October 2014 the helmets were available for free on the honor system.[9][10] A rental system was put into effect starting in Spring 2015.[9][10]


Primary sponsorship for the system was provided by Seattle-based Alaska Airlines, who paid $2.5 million for a 5-year sponsorship that includes their logo on the bikes themselves.[11] Seattle Children's Hospital, Group Health, REI, Vulcan Real Estate and Fred Hutch were among the system's secondary sponsors.[12]


The Pronto bike share system technology, both hardware and software, was provided by 8D Technologies, who also supply the server technology for BIXI Montréal, Citi Bike in New York City, Santander Cycles in London, Capital Bikeshare in Washington DC, and others.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "About Pronto". Pronto Cycle Share. Retrieved September 15, 2015.
  2. ^ "Say hello to Pronto! Emerald City Cycle Share". Seattle Bike Blog. May 5, 2014. Retrieved September 15, 2015.
  3. ^ Beekman, Daniel (March 14, 2016). "Seattle City Council votes to buy struggling Pronto bike-share program". The Seattle Times. Retrieved March 14, 2016.
  4. ^ Bush, Evan (November 23, 2016). "Pronto bike share will be gone soon, so what's next?". The Seattle Times. Retrieved November 23, 2016.
  5. ^ "City announces $3 million in bicycle and pedestrian improvements" (Press release). Office of the Mayor of Seattle. January 13, 2017. Retrieved January 13, 2017.
  6. ^ Gutman, David (March 28, 2017). "Seattle's Pronto bike share shut down on March 31". The Seattle Times. Retrieved April 2, 2017.
  7. ^ Herz, Ansel (October 13, 2014). "Seattle Bicycle Share Launched Today! Here's What You Need to Know". The Stranger. Retrieved September 15, 2015.
  8. ^ DeLuca, Nick (October 14, 2014). "Seattle's Inaugural Bike Share System is the Nation's First to Distribute Helmets". BostInno. Retrieved September 15, 2015.
  9. ^ a b Chen, Natasha; Guerrerro, Maria (October 13, 2014). "Seattle bike share launches as mayor eyes expansion". KIRO TV News. Retrieved October 21, 2014.
  10. ^ a b Trujillo, Joshua (October 13, 2014). "Seattle Bike Share Kicks Off". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Retrieved September 15, 2015.
  11. ^ Lindblom, Mike (May 5, 2014). "$2.5M from Alaska Airlines to help bike-share program roll". The Seattle Times. Retrieved September 15, 2015.
  12. ^ "Gearing up: Mayor Murray, Alaska Airlines CEO Brad Tilden kick off Pronto bicycle-sharing service". Puget Sound Business Journal. October 13, 2014. Retrieved September 15, 2015.

External links[edit]