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Friday, January 24, 2014 - 12:46pm

Savannah Opens Georgia's First Bike Share Program

Savannah has become the first community in Georgia to offer a public bike sharing program.

It’s starting small – just two stations and 16 bicycles. But organizers of the program CAT Bike say they hope to eventually expand the program, which is patterned after those in cities from Boston to Des Moines to Denver.

Savannah’s Mayor Pro Tem Van Johnson says the city’s flat terrain and warm climate make it easily walkable and bikeable.

“We know that world-class cities have world-class transportation systems, and they’re more than just buses,” Johnson said at a press conference in Savannah Friday morning.

Savannah Alderman Van Johnson is holding green pair of scissors used in the official bike share ribbon cutting (Photo: Sarah McCammon, GPB News)

Chatham Transit Authority kicked off the bike share program with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and ride between the two stations – from Savannah’s Joe Murray Rivers Intermodal Transit Center and Ellis Square.

Chatham Area Transit Board Chairman Pete Liakakis says he believes the bikes will help to reduce noise and pollution by cutting down on downtown traffic.

Riders can use credit cards to sign up for memberships ranging from one day to one year. Charges start at $5 and increase depending on how long the bike is used and the type of membership.

Atlanta is also working on a bike share program. It’s expected to roll out this summer.

Here's some raw video of the opening day of the bike share: