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While the Chicago region’s population grew by 18 percent since 1980, the traffic increased by 66 percent in the same period.

CTA, Divvy receive grant for app upgrades

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Chicago’s Divvy bikeshare network is a nationally recognized success story.

As the program continues to expand, many have recognized the need to integrate it with the rest of Chicago’s transit system. This effort took a major step forward last week when Sen. Dick Durbin and Rep. Dan Lipinski announced a $400,000 federal grant to help incorporate Divvy into the Ventra app.  

The money will go toward developing modifications to the Ventra app that will allow users to “more easily locate Divvy bike share stations, view bike and dock availability and seamlessly pay for Divvy bike rentals through the app using Ventra transit value.”

The grant was awarded to CTA through the federal Mobility on Demand initiative, an $8 million program designed to fund technological innovation in transportation across the country.  

Divvy is an integral part of Chicago’s transit system, and especially important for the “first/last mile” between riders’ homes and transit infrastructure. Lipinski expects that “having an easier way to use Divvy with public transportation will help encourage more people to use the CTA,” as well as spurring more bike ridership.

Multi-modal trips are increasingly common for transit users, and Active Trans supports the streamlining of payment options across modes and agencies.  

Allowing Ventra users to access Divvy through their app is “good for the health of the region, the environment and helps address the ongoing challenges that come with congestion,” said Lipinski.

Active Trans thanks Durbin, Lipinski and the Federal Transit Administration for their work to secure these funds, as well as CTA and the Chicago Department of Transportation for pursuing this opportunity.

We hope to see even further integration of different Chicago transportation options, because as Lipinski has said, “giving this bike sharing system and other creative transportation alternatives a boost just makes sense.” 

This post was authored by Advocacy Intern Justin Dodd.