Last year a new transportation solution came to Rochester, New York. I’m not talking about Uber or Lyft. And I’m not talking about a light rail system, even though that would be nice. Pace is what I’m referring to. Formerly known as Zagster, Pace is a bike sharing service at many locations throughout downtown and different neighborhoods.
At first, Pace started with only two hundred and fifty bikes. But after doing so well last year, there’s plans of adding many more with the possibility of eventually reaching one thousand. They’ve also updated the App that allows you to unlock a bicycle from any station, using just your cell phone.
Everywhere I go I see people enjoying Pace rental bikes. And I hear about all the great benefits that they give to city residents. They even have a station located around the corner from the Regional Transit Center. As soon as I get off the bus and walk around the corner, the Pace rental station is the first thing I see.
Finally Got To Try Pace Bicycle
After seeing this station, plus many ones in different areas, I decided to find out for myself. Downloading the App and creating an account was super simple. At first I though this would be difficult, but was pleasantly surprised when it only took about two minutes. The App then showed me the closest stations.
Finding a station was a breeze seeing that they have dozens at very convenient locations. I had no idea they had so many, but it’s great to know. In the future I can easily pick up a Pace bicycle at one site, ride to a restaurant or store, and drop it off at a nearby station.
This eliminates the hassles I use to face when I owned a bicycle. Instead of locking the bicycle up to a random tree or street sign, I can eliminate the worries associated with theft or damage.
And if I don’t want to drop the Pace bicycle off yet, they have a hold option. All Pace bicycles come with their own lock.
This allows you to secure it to any public bike rack with ease. And because they only cost a dollar for every thirty minutes, you don’t have to stress over how expensive it will be.
My First Pace Bicycle Ride
Using my cell phone with the Bluetooth turned on, unlocking a bicycle was fast and easy. I put my coat in the handy basket attached to the handlebars, and rode to the closest station.
Each bicycle has a five speed internal gear hub, but for the distance I was going, three was enough. The gears shifted fairly smooth and fast, and the overall feel of the bicycle was very comfortable.
You won’t be winning any races on a Pace bicycle because the sitting position is very upright. This is strictly a bicycle built for city riding, something that I like. But the wide high handlebars and wide cushioned seat makes it feel like you could ride it for hours.
Plus the seat is also very adjustable, allowing both short and tall people to set it at a comfortable height.
These bicycles also come with built-in lights, providing extra safety. Whenever you’re pedaling the front hub supplies power to them. Overall the bicycle felt very solid, and was a very enjoyable experience.
Dropping Of The Pace Bicycle Was Easy
Once arriving at the station, I reopened the App and clicked end ride. At first I struggled, because I wasn’t pushing the orange tab behind the wheel down all the way. This locks the back wheel, preventing it from rolling.
After I figured that out, I inserted the pin attached to the cable, and double checked it to make sure it was locked. As soon as it was secure, I got a notification that the ride was over with a receipt attached.
They do have videos in the App that shows how to unlock and secure the bicycle when finished. I just didn’t take the time to watch them because I had to catch my bus in six minutes. Still, the process of using the bicycle was super easy, despite my stubbornness to watch the very short videos.
I would definitely use this bicycle sharing service again and recommend it highly. It’s a very cheap and enjoyable option. It’s way better than using an expensive taxi cab service and less stressful than owning a bicycle of your own.
No more worrying about theft, damage or storage issues. And did I mention that the first half hour ride is free?