Regular Detroit bus riders can use a bike sharing service for free under a pilot program that began Monday.

Under the initiative, customers who buy a weekly, biweekly or monthly bus pass from the Detroit Department of Transportation will receive a 30-day pass to use the orange MoGo Detroit bicycles.

The program will last until 2,000 MoGo passes are given away. 

Lisa Nuszkowski, founder and executive director of MoGo, hopes the partnership will make transportation easier and save time for riders getting around the city.

"We were looking for news ways to connect with riders," she said. "We're hoping to introduce DDOT riders to MoGo."

Nuszkowski said the partnership used other cities with similar transit programs as models for the Detroit program.

Nicole Simmons, a DDOT spokeswoman, said the initiative is aimed at meeting the evolving needs of the city's public transit users..

"We were looking to explore new and innovative ways for Detroit riders to get around. We're trying to help meet the diverse needs of riders," she said.

DDOT bus passes cost $14.40 a week, $27.50 biweekly, and $47 monthly, while MoGo passes are $8 for a day, $18 for a month, and $80 annually.

Bus pass buyers can get the free MoGo pass at the Rosa Parks Transit Center, DDOT's main office, or the Coleman A. Young Municipal Center.

Simmons says organizers hope DDOT riders will use the bicycles for shorter trips when taking the bus isn't practical. DDOT received feedback that some corridors were not easily accessible by bus, according to Simmons. 

The free pass initiative may be expanded or altered depending on how the pilot program works, Simmons said.

"We can track the use of passes," she said. "We can see if this is something that is beneficial."

"I've already heard from some of our cashiers that people are excited about it," Simmons said. "We hope this will help people hear about a method of transportation they might not otherwise have heard about."

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