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Long-awaited RVA Bike Share program ready to roll August 29th, city announces

Mayor Stoney will launch the program, which includes 220 eight-speed bicycles available from 17 stations around the city, next Tuesday morning.

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Richmond’s long-awaited bike share service, dubbed the RVA Bike Share, is finally getting wheels.

Mayor Levar Stoney will launch the program on Tuesday, August 29th at 9:00 AM at Kanawha Plaza and lead cyclists on a two-mile ride from across the Manchester Bridge to the T. Tyler Potterfield Bridge, ending at Browns Island.

The city teamed up with Canadian company Bewegen Technologies Inc. to supply the bicycles and docking stations. The equipment will be maintained by Corps Logistics, a Baltimore-based firm.

The initial phase includes 220 eight-speed bikes and 20 docking stations located throughout the city. A second phase is expected to be implemented in the coming months, doubling the fleet and including electric assist PedElec bikes, making it easier to ride uphill. These high-tech bicycles will be equipped with a color screen, live GPS, and can be unlocked through a mobile app.

Map of the 17 stations around Richmond.

Here’s how it all works. All you need to do is buy a one-time, monthly, or annual pass, head to one of the 17 bike share stations located throughout the city, and unlock your bike. The first 45 minutes of each ride are included in your base fare; it’s $3.00 per half hour after that. Then simply return your bike to any docking station in the city.

One-time passes are $1.75. $18.00 gets you unlimited rides monthly; $96.00 gives you access for an entire year.

“Bike sharing programs are a community transportation service and desired amenity provided by forward thinking and environmentally conscious cities,” said Mayor Stoney. “I am proud Richmond is now among those leading in this regard.”

The RVA Bike Share is a public-private initiative, and Mayor Stoney has encouraged Richmond’s corporate and business leaders to engage in sponsorship opportunities necessary to ensure the long-term sustainability of the program.

Plans for RVA Bike Share have been in the works since 2012 and were made possible in part by a federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality grant totaling just over $1 million, distributed in 2014. Just over $280,000 in capital improvement funds were also made available by the city for the project.

Learn more about the program, find the station closest to you, buy passes, and more on the RVA Bike Share website here.

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Trevor Dickerson is the co-founder and editor of RVAhub.com, lover of all things Richmond, and a master of karate and friendship for everyone.

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RPD Investigating Quadruple Shooting

At approximately 1:27 a.m., officers were called to the 200 block of Crane Street for the report of a shooting.

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From RPD:

Richmond Police detectives are investigating a quadruple shooting that occurred early Sunday morning and are asking for the community’s help.

At approximately 1:27 a.m., officers were called to the 200 block of Crane Street for the report of a shooting.

Officers arrived and found an adult male suffering from an apparent gunshot wound. He was transported to a local hospital with life threatening injuries. Three additional victims self-transported to a local hospital, all with gunshot wounds, and one with life threatening injuries.

There was a large crowd in the parking lot prior to the shooting. Anyone with information is asked to call Major Crimes Detective M. Young at (804) 646-3926 or contact Crime Stoppers at 780-1000. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones also may be used. All Crime Stoppers reporting methods are anonymous.

 

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Police Looking for Detergent Thief

Over the past two weeks, the male in the photos twice entered a store located in the 2400 block of East Main Street, produced a bag and filled it with several bottles of laundry detergent before leaving the store.

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From RPD:

Can you identify the larceny suspect in the photos who twice cleaned out a store of laundry detergent recently?

Over the past two weeks the male in the photos twice entered a store located in the 2400 block of East Main Street, produced a bag and filled it with several bottles of laundry detergent before leaving the store.

The male is approximately 5’ 9” tall. In one incident he wore a blue polo shirt, ripped blue jeans, and white shoes.

Anyone who recognizes this individual or knows his whereabouts is asked to call First Precinct Detective Sergeant Miller at (804) 646-1289 or contact Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000.

The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones may also be used. All Crime Stoppers methods are anonymous.

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Downtown

McAuliffe crushes competitors in Democratic primary for governor

For anyone wondering how Terry McAuliffe was feeling before Virginia’s gubernatorial primary, his election-eve shimmying spree was a solid indicator.

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For anyone wondering how Terry McAuliffe was feeling before Virginia’s gubernatorial primary, his election-eve shimmying spree was a solid indicator.

The almost-victory dance became the real thing Tuesday as the former governor and prolific Democratic fundraiser cruised to a lopsided win in a split field, setting up a general-election matchup with deep-pocketed Republican nominee Glenn Youngkin.

Tuesday’s victory cements McAuliffe’s return to the forefront of Virginia politics after serving as governor from 2014 to 2018. He had to leave office due to Virginia’s ban on governors serving consecutive terms, but there was nothing stopping him running again after a brief hiatus in which he explored the idea of a presidential run or a potential post in President Joe Biden’s cabinet.

Though McAuliffe has said fellow Democrats encouraged him to return and help keep the state blue, a claim backed by his lengthy list of endorsements from senior members of the General Assembly, some have faulted him for taking the rare step of reasserting himself atop a party that was racking up electoral successes and policy wins in his absence.

That didn’t seem to be a tough question for the primary voters who showed up Tuesday and overwhelmingly chose McAuliffe over four other contenders. Former delegate Jennifer Carroll Foy and Sen. Jennifer McClellan, D-Richmond, both of whom had hoped to make history as the first Black woman elected governor of any state, were on pace to finish second and third, respectively. Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, his political aspirations hobbled by sexual assault allegations he denies, was in fourth place as of about 8:30 p.m., while Del. Lee Carter, D-Manassas, was in fifth.

In-person turnout appeared sluggish at polling places Tuesday, though it wasn’t immediately clear if that could be attributed to a lack of enthusiasm for an uncompetitive contest at the top of the ticket or the broader shift to mail-in ballots due to the pandemic and looser rules on absentee voting.

Two-thirds of the 2021 Democratic ticket will be a rerun of the party’s 2013 slate after Attorney General Mark Herring defeated challenger Jay Jones, a state delegate from Norfolk.

Del. Hala Ayala, D-Prince William, backed by establishment Democrats like Gov. Ralph Northam and Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn, D-Fairfax, came out on top in the crowded primary for lieutenant governor, adding diversity to a ticket with two other slots filled by White men who have held statewide office before.

In interviews Tuesday about their picks for governor, some Democratic voters indicated they didn’t look much further than McAuliffe, deciding early that someone who did the job before could do it again.

“He was forthcoming. He was honest,” said Doreen Taylor, a self-described “60-plus” voter who cast her ballot for McAuliffe in Richmond’s Jackson Ward neighborhood. “He told people what needed to be done and he did it.”

Nick Walker, a 26-year-old craft brewer who saw his Virginia Beach brewpub shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, had a more specific McAuliffe story. He said he met the former governor at a beer event during McAuliffe’s first term and complained that the state’s arcane beer distribution rules were preventing small brewers from transporting their products throughout the state. Instead of getting brushed off, Walker said, McAuliffe connected him with a state official who could help.

“At that moment, he was just a guy who didn’t understand what was going on, but knew that something was wrong,” Walker said. “And instead of being like, ‘Oh we’ll fix it’ and then saying nothing, he delegated it to someone who knew how to fix it. And then we literally fixed that problem within the craft beer industry within a year. That doesn’t happen. And that was huge for me.”

While voting for McAuliffe at Petersburg’s 112-year-old train station, Carol Johnson said that, as a Black woman, she had considered supporting McClellan or Caroll Foy, both of whom have strong Petersburg ties. But she ultimately decided McAuliffe gives Democrats their best shot at victory this fall.

“I don’t think we have time to waste. I think we need somebody in there who knows how to get things done from the start,” Johnson said.

Darrell Mason, however, was all about getting “some new blood in there.”

“I voted for Jennifer … somebody,” he said, sliding down his mask to show a sly grin. Later, he said he voted for Carroll Foy.

“I know Terry McAuliffe; had my picture made with him. I like him and I know, hands down, that he’s going to win. It’s a sure thing,” Mason said. “I just want her (Carroll Foy) to get some votes to help her with her career.”

Other voters said they were frustrated by the way McAuliffe blocked the rise of other contenders who could have offered a fresher perspective.

Patty Loyde, a 51-year-old bookkeeper who voted for McClellan at a church in Richmond’s Fan District, said McAuliffe was “sucking all the air out of the room because he’s got so much money.”

“If Virginia allowed two terms and he won a second term, I wouldn’t have a problem with it,” Loyde said. “But he’s had his turn. And I just feel like it’s time for a Black person and a woman to be our governor.”

Martha Hoagland, a 23-year-old supply chain management major at Virginia Commonwealth University, said she voted for Carroll Foy because she was looking for the most progressive candidate with the broadest appeal.

“I just don’t want Terry McAuliffe to win,” she said. “Because I think he’s just kind of a corporate person.”

“He seems like a cool-enough guy,” said Kofi Roberts, a 23-year-old recent VCU graduate now working as a copywriting intern. “But it’s just like, what have you done since you’ve been governor that’s impacted me that I could point to?”

A McAuliffe win, he said, would feel “kind of like the Joe Biden presidency.”

“I wanted Bernie to win. Biden won. It’s not great. But it’s not terrible,” Roberts said. “Like the world still might burn. But at least in the meantime …”

“It’s not being lit on fire,” Hoagland said.

Mercury columnist Bob Lewis contributed reporting.

This has been a breaking news post. Check back for updates. 

Virginia Mercury is part of States Newsroom, a network of news outlets supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Virginia Mercury maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Robert Zullo for questions: [email protected] Follow Virginia Mercury on Facebook and Twitter.

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