Monday, July 2, 2012

The Bike-sharing World -The First Week of July 2012

           Vancouver, British Columbia

The Bike-sharing Blog attended last week’s Velo-city Global 2012 Conference. Bike-sharing was one of the pivotal themes of the week.
The Bike-share Bloggers, Paul deMaio and I made presentations on the topics of Municipal Best Practices and Maping the Explosion of Bike-sharing, the latter with the help of Oliver O’Brien of CASA and Andrea Beatty of B-cycle,  co-presented on the topics of Bike-sharing as an extention of public transit with representatives from Vancouver, Boston and Montréal and co-hosted roundtable discussions on Regional Bike-sharing Lessons with representatives from San Francisco and Boston.
There were presentations on bike-sharing from the four corners of the globe and the standard reference of everyone was our very own, The World Bike-sharing Map

Public Bike Systems Company supplied bicycles to all the hundreds of attendees to the Conference
One of more interesting exhibits at the conference, was a new bike-share bike out of Switzerland, Velobility. The bike centralizes all the electronics and the mechanics into a one “box” drive train, called the Ridebox.
The Ridebox has the capacity to be configured as strictly mechanical or as a pedelec with single or multiple speeds. It could have active GPS to track the bike and special remote locking to disable the bike. It could be configured to recognize a users’ RFID and set the bike to that user’s preferences. All of this is secure in the enclosed belt drive boxThere is more information on the web sites Velobility and Innovations.  Every bike-share vendor at the conference was suitably impressed. Types of these bikes are now in use in several cities in Switzerland and Germany. 

To this bike-share blogger, this bicycle was really the first indication of 4th generation bike-sharing! Couple this bike with a single mobility card (or telecommunications device) that can be used on bike-share, trains, subways, light rail, trams, buses, car sharing, on-street and off-street private bike and private car parking and there will be true 21st century “4th gen” bike-sharing.

Also at Velo-city Global 2012, Michael Jones, the CEO of Portland's Alta Planning, the sister company to Alta Bicycle Share, which is negotiating with Vancouver to implement bike-sharing next spring, said that they are looking into helmet vending machines for all 125 bike stations according to The Vancouver Courier.

                Long Beach, New York

Decorating the Long Island beach community just outside New York City, is the first Decobike system outside of Florida. With 15 stations and 200 bikes, the system launched on Wednesday, June 27, 2012. Like its Miami Beach sister, the system can be used as subscription based bike-sharing or for hourly rentals from the same stations. The pricing structure can be seen here. On the first Sunday of operation, the system had close to 2 usages for each one of the bikes. That is very respectable. There is a train every hour from Penn Station in New York City directly to a Decobike station in Long Beach, NY. Everyone in the New York City metropolitan area can get a taste of bike-sharing before the City serves up its main course.

               Kansas City, Missouri

To paraphrase Fats Domino* Bike-sharing is going to Kansas City, Kansas city here it comes. Tomorrow, July 3rd, early in the afternoon,  Kansas City B-cycle rolls across downtown KC with 90 bicycles to outfit 12 stations. Sponsored by a partnership with Bike WalkKC and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City this system brings more bike-sharing into the middle of North America. The system will offer daily, weekly, monthly and yearly subscription passes. The rates can be seen here. This brings the total of B-cycle systems to twelve for the beginning of July. We wonder if Kansas City B-cycle has plans on taking a page from Nice Ride Minnesota, Capital bixi, Capital Bikeshare or Hubway by jumping the river and going into Kansas City, Kansas!

The 5th Anniversary Celebration of Vélib' (July 15, 2007) began the last weekend of June with a Grand Party "The 24hr de Vélib'" on the Champs-Élysees to raise money for various charities. Not even bad weather could dampen the spirits of Les Vélibeurs who rode the length of the Grand Avenue over and over again. The more they rode the more money was raised.  There is a good recounting of this event by Marion at Vélib' et Moi

In French and English


To start July, Hangzhou Public Bicycle Service debuted an essential part on any great bike-sharing system, a mascot!

It's name is "'C' class or 'C' earners." The 'C' at the top of its head stands for the French word Cyclisme. This is a goal for all its ridersThe face resembles the spokes of a wheel of a bike-share bike, but in the shape of 
the great West Lake of Hangzhou. The color of its clothes is that of the Hangzhou bikes!
The stuffed toy dolls and lapel pins will be for sale online at Hangzhou Public Bike Service soon! 

Images: The Dike Sharing Blog, Decobike Patch, BikeWalkKC Video: Marie de Paris "C class"
Lyrics Kansas City by Jerry Leiber and Jack Stoller

Russell Meddin

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