Thursday, January 31, 2008

Time Elapsed Video of Bicing Use

This video produced by Fabien Girardin of Pompeu Fabra University shows one Sunday's Bicing use in October 2007. In this video one can watch time-elapsed Bicing activity throughout Barcelona based on each station's location. During the day, the stations in the city center and by the beach are most heavily used. In the evening, Barcelona's citizens ride back to their neighborhoods.

This video highlights the importance of logistics in bike-sharing programs. Barcelona is in a valley, so there is great demand for riding bikes downhill, but less interest in riding back up. Many other cities are experiencing this same thing as Lyon and Paris have hilly sections. Washington, D.C. has a downtown that is flat with surrounding neighborhoods uphill. Financial incentives could be a way to get customers to ride back uphill. Instead of the first 30 minutes of bike-sharing use being free, why not even pay the customer to ride to stations in less demand during certain times of the day or days of the week with program credit?

video credit: Fabien Girardin


Anonymous said...

I lived in the city of North Vancouver, BC, which is located on the side of a slope. Although I had no problem on a weekend cycling up the hill to get home, no amount of money could give me the energy to do it after a long work day. Vancouver is looking at a bike sharing program, and I hope that there will be electric boost on the bikes. It is a hilly city and I think people won't use the bikes just because of the hills.

Carloz said...

I live in Barcelona and am a Bicing member. Yes, it can be a little challenging going uphill, but a large part of the city is relatively flat -- and that includes the city center. For me it's not so much the effort of going uphill, but the increased time required to travel uphill, that makes me sometimes choose to use the bus or metro instead -- both of which are pretty good here, by the way. Anyway, thanks for the blog! Saludos, Carloz