Almost a year since launching, the Pace bike share program in downtown Knoxville had a lot more riders than anticipated.

In that time, riders clocked in more than 18,000 rides longer than five minutes.

People combined biked almost 45,000 miles since February 1, 2018.

With 200 bikes at 13 stations through downtown, UT's campus, and the greenways -- it's hard not to stumble across a Pace bike.

"The really cool part is how the community has embraced this, not even from the locals but to the visitors also," said Visit Knoxville President Kim Bumpas.

She said the success of the Pace bikes is big, even with a wet year.

"The weather in 2018 from February to today, it had something like 145 rain days," said Bumpas. "So we really did good even despite the weather. People are proving in Knoxville they'll ride year round."

Check it out by the numbers from 2018:

  • 9,100 Pace app downloads
  • 2.6 million calories burnt
  • 4,200 car trips eliminated
  • 6 tons of carbon dioxide emission prevented
  • 2.7 miles per ride on average

"Some of our heaviest use stations are right there at Visit Knoxville and the visitors center, some of the breweries - go figure - and then the University of Tennessee has great ridership as well," said Bumpas.

The city doesn't make much money off the fees people pay to rent bikes. Instead the Pace company uses that money to keep bikes in circulation.

"If a bike gets thrown in the river, or a bike breaks, or the bikes need to be redeployed daily, that's what our partner does."

Bike use isn't tracked month-by-month yet, but they don't get as much use in the winter. 

Bumpas said the Pace program has cemented itself here, and there's only more to come.

"As we look to the future of what does mobility look like, I think you'll start to see a lot of neat additions as we move in to 2019," she said.

Anyone can access these bikes 24/7 if you have the app downloaded to unlock them.

Don't let the winter scare you away from giving them a try.