Facebook: a bike program worth liking
Status update: Facebook has an amazing bike program.
While the high-tech giant has had a dedicated group of cyclists since its early days, the company didn’t have much of a bike program – until this past year.
With meteoric growth, Facebook moved its operation from a couple of buildings in Palo Alto to a sprawling campus in Menlo Park. The new campus has capacity for 6,600 employees, but parking for half that many.
With the move, Facebook reinforced its commitment to 50% alternative transportation. Their goal (which they’re close to achieving) is for half their workforce to get to and from work in ways other than their own vehicles. Shuttles, vanpools, ride share, public transit and bike commuting are options the company fully supports.
Their new, larger campus also posed the challenge of getting around during the workday. With so many buildings, configured in a large ring around an interior courtyard, employees could spend a lot of time walking or waiting for a shuttle to get from one end to the others.
In true social mode, Facebook turned the campus into a mini city, complete with a fleet of bikes to get around.
This Fall, the League of American Bicyclists recognized all of Facebook’s efforts and awarded them the prestigious Gold Level Bike Friendly Business designation.
This award recognizes all the ways that bike use is encouraged, supported and integrated into daily corporate life. Facebook’s Gold-level program includes:
- A fleet of company bikes to get around campus
- Bikes at the Fitness Center available for recreational, sport and commute rides
- Secure bike parking throughout campus, including interior and exterior bike rack and secure bike shelters
- Showers, lockers and towel service in every building
- Safe cycling workshops
- Discounts on bikes and gear
- On-site bike repair and support
- Free custom bike helmets for all who participated in Bike-to-Work Day (they doubled participation this year!)
- A Free loaner program to help employees try bike commuting
- Support for improving bike lane networks and the Bay Trail, helping all bike commuters in the area
This Winter, Facebook will open The Hub, a place for employees to get expert, on-site bike repair as well as a do-it-yourself repair station, bike events, education and all-around bike community and culture. Employees will find everything they need here to get a round without using their own car.
Facebook is committed to their goal of growing a healthy workforce and sustainable business model. “We want the best talent at our company and there is a lot of competition out there” says Jessica Herrera, Transportation Manager at Facebook, “…we want employees to be happy and healthy.”
Bikes have become an important part of this strategy. And that’s something we all can like.