Posts tagged “ofo

City of College Station reinstates ofo’s permit

The City of College Station on Friday reinstated the permit required for ofo — the Beijing-based dockless bike share company — to operate outside the Texas A&M University campus.

As long as the company continues to meet city requirements, ofo’s permit to operate in College Station remains valid through Aug. 23, 2019 — one year from its original issue date.

Texas A&M has an exclusive contract with ofo to operate the bicycles on its campus, but a city ordinance governs how dockless bike-share businesses operate beyond campus boundaries. A&M Transportation Services has indicated it will transition its dockless bike-share system to a new vendor after the fall semester.

ofo’s permit was revoked Oct. 12 due to multiple violations of College Station’s ordinance governing dockless bike-share programs. Among the violations was a lapse in automobile liability insurance coverage, which prevented ofo’s paid drivers from legally operating vehicles used to gather and relocate the yellow bikes.

In addition to its automobile liability insurance coverage reestablished, ofo also paid $5,785 in outstanding citations and replenished its $5,000 escrow account with the city.

– Public Communications Office

 

 

 


Live Blog: Thursday’s city council meetings (Oct. 25)

(L-R): Bob Brick, Linda Harvell, Jerome Rektorik, Karl Mooney (mayor), John Nichols, Barry Moore, James Benham.

By Colin Killian, Public Communications Manager

Welcome to our live blog from the College Station City Council’s workshop and regular meetings on Thursday, Oct. 25. It’s not the official minutes.

The meetings can be watched live on Suddenlink channel 19 or online. An archive of previous council meetings is available on the website.

5:12 p.m.

The workshop has started.

Bryan Woods

5:13 p.m.

Woods named City Manager

The council unanimously selected Bryan Woods as College Station’s city manager, effective Dec. 3. He has been New Braunfels’ assistant city manager since 2017.

Woods replaces Kelly Templin, who left last spring to lead the Texas A&M University System’s new RELLIS Campus. Jeff Capps has since served as interim city manager.

Press release: Woods named College Station City Manager

5:14 p.m.

Consent Agenda Discussion

The council will vote on items listed on the consent agenda during tonight’s regular meeting. No items were pulled for workshop discussion.

5:50 p.m.

Dockless Bike Share Update

The council was updated on Texas A&M’s dockless bike share program. The city issued a permit to Ofo, the program’s vendor, on Aug. 23, and revoked it on Oct. 12 after the company lost its auto liability insurance. To be reinstated, Ofo must update its insurance, present rebalancing and communication plans, and replenish its escrow account with the city.

The university will assume operational control and will also seek a new vendor for 2019. The existing 2,300 yellow bikes will be collected, donated, repurposed or recycled at the end of the fall semester.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

6:11 p.m.

BioCorridor Board Powers and Duties

The council discussed the powers and duties of the BioCorridor Board. The consensus was to keep the board in place.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

6:15 p.m.

Mayor Karl Mooney adjourned the workshop after the council discussed its calendar and received committee reports. The regular meeting will start after a short break.

6:28 p.m.

The regular meeting has started.

6:35 p.m.

Brazos Fellowship Church Recognition

Police Chief Scott McCollum and Fire Chief Jonathan McMahan recognized Brazos Fellowship Church for its community service in supporting first responders during a 16-hour standoff with an armed man in August at a local bar and grill.

6:39 p.m.

Municipal Court Week

Mayor Mooney proclaimed Nov. 5-9 as Municipal Court Week in recognition of the importance of municipal courts, the rule of law, and the fair and impartial administration of justice.

6:46 p.m.

Community Planning Month

Mayor Mooney proclaimed October as National Community Planning Month to highlight the important role planning plays in addressing our community’s most daunting challenges, including housing affordability and availability.

6:50 p.m.

Hear Visitors

One person spoke during Hear Visitors when citizens might address the council on any item that doesn’t appear on the posted agenda.

  • Councilman Jerome Rektorik recognized Jeff Capps for his service as interim city manager since March.

6:51 p.m.

Consent Agenda

The council voted unanimously to approve the entire consent agenda:

  • Renewal of a $130,000 award for city-branded uniforms for parks and recreation athletic programs and other city departments with CC Creations ($65,000) and M&M Apparel ($65,000).
  • A $589,787 contract with Marek Brothers Construction for the renovation of the Bob and Wanda Meyer Senior and Community Center (formerly the Arts Council Building).
  • Renewal of the annual award not to exceed $503,214.55 for the blanket purchase of three-phase pad-mounted transformers.
  • An $859,640 annual bid award to Techline for electric distribution poles.
  • A $1.42 million contract with Larry Young Paving for the rehabilitation of parking lots and lighting at Bachmann and Beachy Central parks.
  • Resolutions declaring an intention to reimburse certain expenditures with proceeds from debt for Public Works, General Government, and Wastewater projects in the FY19 Capital Improvements budget.
  • The 2018 Property Tax Roll of $46.99 million.
  • An amended ordinance modifying the location, dates and times for voting in the Nov. 6 general and special election to elect two city council members (places 4 and 6), and to submit to voters five proposed amendments to the city charter.

6:54 p.m.

Easement Abandonment

After a public hearing, the council unanimously approved the abandonment of a 20-foot wide public utility on the State Highway 6 bypass north of Pavilion Avenue to allow for development. No existing city utilities are located in the easement, which has no planned use.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

 

7:10 p.m.

Daiquiri Barn Conditional Use Permit

After a public hearing, the council voted 5-2 to approve a conditional use permit for a nightclub, bar or tavern in the shopping center northwest of the Texas Avenue-Southwest Parkway intersection. Councilwoman Linda Harvell and Councilman John Nichols voted against the motion.

The land use request for the Daiquiri Barn included a drive-up window, potential food sales, retail sales, limited interior seating, and alcohol sales for on- and off-site consumption.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

7:33 p.m.

City Hall Construction Manager at Risk

The council unanimously approved a contract with CORE Construction to be the construction manager at risk for the new city hall project.   

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

7:34 p.m.

Groundwater Conservation District Board

The council unanimously appointed Bill Harris to the Brazos Valley Groundwater Conservation District Board of Directors, subject to approval by the Brazos County Commissioners Court.

7:35 p.m.

The council discussed and reviewed future agenda items.

7:35 p.m.

Mayor Mooney adjourned the meeting. The council meets again on Thursday, Nov. 8.

 


About the Blogger

Colin Killian (@ColinKillian) has been with the City of College Station since 2010 after serving 23 years as associate media relations director for the Texas A&M Athletics Department. Killian has also worked as a reporter and editor for the Corpus Christi Caller-Times and Lewisville News. A native of Hobbs, N.M., he graduated from Texas Tech with a bachelor’s degree in journalism/political science.


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5 things to watch at Thursday’s city council meetings

By Colin Killian, Public Communications Manager

The College Station City Council gathers Thursday at city hall for its workshop (5 p.m.) and regular (6 p.m.) meetings.

Here are five items to watch:

  1. Dockless Bike Share Update: In the workshop, the council will hear an update on Texas A&M’s dockless bike share program.
  2. Role of BioCorridor Board: Another workshop item is a discussion of the powers and duties of the BioCorridor Board.
  3. Meyer Senior and Community Center: As part of the consent agenda, the council will consider a $589,787 contract for the renovation of the Bob and Wanda Meyer Senior and Community Center (the former Arts Council building) on the corner of Dartmouth and Colgate.
  4. Bachmann, Central Park Parking Lots: Also on the consent agenda is a $1.42 million contract for the rehabilitation of the parking lots and lighting at Bachmann and Beachy Central parks.
  5. Daiquiri Barn Permit: After a public hearing, the council will consider a conditional use permit for a Daiquiri Barn in the shopping center northwest of the Texas Avenue-Southwest Parkway intersection. The request includes a drive-up window, potential food sales, retail and alcohol sales, and limited interior seating.

The meetings can be watched live on Suddenlink Channel 19 or online. We’ll post a detailed live blog on this site.

Related Links:                                                                 

 


About the Blogger

Colin Killian (@ColinKillian) has been with the City of College Station since 2010 after serving 23 years as associate media relations director for the Texas A&M Athletics Department. Killian has also worked as a reporter and editor for the Corpus Christi Caller-Times and Lewisville News. A native of Hobbs, N.M., he graduated from Texas Tech with a bachelor’s degree in journalism/political science.


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What to do when Ofo becomes an oh no

 

By Aubrey Nettles, Special Projects Coordinator

If you spend much time in College Station these days – especially near the Texas A&M campus – you’ve probably seen a bunch of yellow bikes.

Last spring, Texas A&M partnered with Ofo Bike Share Systems to offer the yellow bikes as an alternative mode of travel on and around campus. Naturally, it didn’t take long for users to venture beyond campus to city streets and neighborhoods.

As the popularity of the dockless bike share program grew, it became clear users needed appropriate guidance on responsible off-campus bike use. Riders are supposed the park the bikes in racks within a geo-fenced area, which includes the campus and a small radius beyond campus.

Unfortunately, the bikes have turned up in a multitude of unintended locations such as grassy areas, sidewalks, roadways – even treetops. Many of the complaints focus on the aesthetic impact of yellow bikes left around town, but they’ve also caused safety concerns.

College Station’s ordinance requires that the program operators must remove bikes reported to be parked incorrectly or left outside the geo-fenced area within two hours from 6 a.m.-6 p.m. or within 12 hours at other times. If they don’t, the company is charged a $125 relocation fee or issued a citation. City code enforcement officers will help enforce the ordinance.

Users can also lose their bike privileges for misuse.

Where to park your yellow bike

Users must park dockless bikes in an upright position in the geo-fence zone that encompasses the area in and around campus.

Dockless Bike Geo-Fence

The bikes should never be parked where they can create a hazard or otherwise impede vehicles or pedestrians.

How to report misplaced bikes

  • Report the issue using the subject line “Dockless Bike Share” on the city’s SeeClickFix code enforcement app. Make sure the location is as accurate as possible.
  • Call Code Enforcement at 979-764-6363. They will send a message to Ofo and the area’s code enforcement officer.
  • Send an email to codeenforcement@cstx.gov.

You can find additional reporting information affixed to the bikes.

As always, bicyclists are encouraged to wear a helmet, obey traffic laws, and yield to pedestrians.

Enjoy your ride!

 


About the Author

Aubrey Nettles is in her fourth year as special projects coordinator in the City Manager’s Office. She previously served as executive assistant to the Fort Bend County Commission and was a management analyst for Harris County. A native of Smithville, Aubrey earned a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Houston in 2012 and a bachelor’s degree in communications from Texas A&M in 2010.  


 

Photo Credit: OFO Uh-ohs of College Station Facebook Page

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