10/12/2011 09:48 am ET Updated Dec 12, 2011

Capital Bikeshare Expansion: Alexandria Council Members OK Plan To Join System

ALEXANDRIA, Va. -- City council members have voted unanimously to approve a plan that will bring the D.C. area's Capital Bikeshare program to places like Carlyle and Old Town. The program will be paid for with $400,000 in existing federal grants.

The city announced that the program is expected to be in place next spring or summer -- just in time for the height of the bike-riding season -- and will involve, initially, 54 bikes at six stations in the Old Town and Carlyle neighborhoods. The exact locations of the stations haven't yet been determined.

Del Ray Patch reports that while the program's expansion into Alexandria enjoys strong support, there is some concern about the size and placement of the initial rollout. Councilman Paul Smedberg and Vice Mayor Kerry Donley both expressed some disappointment that none of the initial bike stations would be located in Del Ray:

"I think the pilot is meager," Donley said. "I am fine with the recommendation, but I’d like to see it expanded. … The goal is not to cover the city. It’s to connect Metro stations and activity centers to other activity centers."

Capital Bikeshare recently celebrated its one-year anniversary, and its one-millionth ride. There are now 1,100 bikes, and more than 110 bike stations, spread around the District of Columbia and Arlington, with that number set to grow with an expansion planned in those jurisdictions and for parts of Montgomery County.