VeoRide disposed its University of Kansas bicycles in a Lawrence recycling center after a contract with the company ended on March 30.
VeoRide agreed with the University to remove all pedal bikes from campus once the contract concluded, said Donna Hultine, director of KU Parking and Transit.
The pedal bikes were piled up at a recycling center near the intersection of 12th Street and Haskell Avenue. It’s unclear when the bikes were relocated to the recycling center.
“It was our understanding that the bikes would be painted so that they would no longer be KU branded and donated to Lawrence neighborhoods,” Hultine said in an email to the Kansan.
A representative from VeoRide told Hultine donation services were affected by the coronavirus outbreak. The company decided to sell the bikes to a metal recycler instead of donating them.
A photo of KU-branded VeoRide bikes piled up in the recycling center circulated on Lawrence social media pages Tuesday. Many Lawrence residents who commented on the posts were upset by the bikes being tossed out.
“I’ve been getting many inquiries [about the bikes],” Hultine said. “This is not the fate we had in mind for these bicycles.”
The University is looking to extend its contract for the electric bikes provided by VeoRide, said Zach Thomason, Student Senate’s chief of staff and a member of the Transit Advisory board.
“The bike program was a very ambitious program that the University embarked on, and I’m very enthused that there’s a possibility to continue it with the e-bikes,” Thomason said.
A pilot program for e-scooters on campus, which was first introduced in 2019, was pushed back by the City of Lawrence due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Hultine said.