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  1. #1
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    Does your city/town have a bike share program?

    Hello all!

    I have read about the success of bike share programs in other countries and am wondering whether such programs have been implemented in the US, and whether they have been successful. By bike share programs, I am referring to the short term rental of bikes at bike stations. You swipe your credit card, grab a bike and go.

    If you have such a program in your area, I would like to hear about it.

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    SNARKY MEMBER CardiacKid's Avatar
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    They rent classic bikes?

  3. #3
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    Sorry. To clarify, they are typically new bikes. Perhaps there is a better sub-forum to post this query in, but this is the sub-forum where I spend the most time and thought I would try here first. But maybe you are on to something with renting classic bikes!

  4. #4
    Senior Member 3speedslow's Avatar
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    Does my town have a......HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA !!!!

  5. #5
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    He in Luxembourg we have this system. I think it is a good idea, even if I prefer riding my own classic bikes

  6. #6
    Bicycle Repairman kingsting's Avatar
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    I'm sure if I left some of my bikes outside unattended for a little while someone will come along and "share" them...
    There's always room for one more bike!

  7. #7
    aka Tom Reingold noglider's Avatar
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    We've been thinking about starting one, though I think we're a long way off.
    Please email me rather than sending me a private message. My address is noglider@pobox.com

    Tom Reingold
    New York City and High Falls, NY
    noglider's ride blog

  8. #8
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    If you want an example, check out Montreal's Bixi program. Minneapolis and toronto have the same bikes in a similar system. Its immensely popular here.
    "tongue is big, like dog"

  9. #9
    Senior Member Mike from Iowa's Avatar
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    We have a bike library. Here is their website:

    http://www.bikelibrary.org/

    Here is an article from today's paper about our excess bikes going to overseas users:

    http://www.press-citizen.com/article...into-the-world

    The library has been around for about 5 years

    -Mike

  10. #10
    Senior Member ColonelJLloyd's Avatar
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    DC's system (Capital Bikeshare) went live a couple weeks ago. My sister in law uses it. I visited Paris earlier in the spring. It's a very popular system (Velib), although they had vandalism issues early on. Dublin uses the same bikes, but the concept isn't as popular so far as I could tell. The Dublin system is called "Dublin Bikes".

    Amsterdam has an unofficial program. You get wasted, can't find your bike so you take one that isn't yours. That person does the same and so on. The vast majority of bikes in Amsterdam are essentially the same anyway. Very, very utilitarian.
    Last edited by ColonelJLloyd; 11-04-10 at 09:48 PM.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Ekdog's Avatar
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    I know you asked about programs in the U.S., but we have one here in Seville called Sevici which is similar to the one in Paris (Vélib). It's been operating since 2007 and has been a resounding success.

  12. #12
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    Nothing like it here. Not in practice and not in planning.

  13. #13
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3speedslow View Post
    Does my town have a......HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA !!!!
    Yup...another North Carolinian...and no we don't have bike sharing and I suspect it will be a cold day in hell before we ever see it.

    FWIW we have tried on the bikes in the Denver bike share and they don't fit us well at all. I am 6'-2" and my bride is 5'-0 1/2". The only bike we have ever been able to stretch to fit both of us is the venerable Raleigh Twenty.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

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  14. #14
    Senior Member Spudd's Avatar
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    Here in Toronto they just announced we'll be getting one, but it's not in place yet.

    ColonelJLloyd mentioned the Washington DC program just went live a few weeks ago, but I went on vacation to Washington last May (2009) and we saw a bikeshare near our hotel. I just googled it and it seems that before, they only had about 100 bikes but now they're going to have over 1000.

  15. #15
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    Thank you so much for the information! I am interested in starting such a program in a few cities in the US. Looks like the DC program would be a good place to start. Seems like if it is well thought out and in an area where it would be useful, it could be a sucess. The European programs seem to provide a good model. Mike, that bike library is a neat concept. Thanks again for the information, I've got some good leads on information!

  16. #16
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    In Des Moines, we have a 4 station b-cycle program. It got started this fall and it attracted a lot of attention.
    http://desmoines.bcycle.com/

    I understand the setup was a lot of work and a pretty major outlay of cash needed. You'll undoubtedly need some business/community partners to start up.

    The provider is BCycle, an affiliate of Trek in Madison.

  17. #17
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerv View Post
    In Des Moines, we have a 4 station b-cycle program. It got started this fall and it attracted a lot of attention.
    http://desmoines.bcycle.com/

    I understand the setup was a lot of work and a pretty major outlay of cash needed. You'll undoubtedly need some business/community partners to start up.

    The provider is BCycle, an affiliate of Trek in Madison.
    Some of the most successful bike share programs are funded and run by private companies. IIRC, the Velib in Paris is free to taxpayers, and the company that runs it makes a profit mainly by selling advertising space on the bike stations and kiosks.


    "Think Outside the Cage"

  18. #18
    Senior Member greengage's Avatar
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    gosh--didn't you know? Bike-sharing programs are the gateway to World Socialism! http://coloradoindependent.com/58885...-un-domination
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  19. #19
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike from Iowa View Post
    We have a bike library. Here is their website:

    http://www.bikelibrary.org/

    Here is an article from today's paper about our excess bikes going to overseas users:

    http://www.press-citizen.com/article...into-the-world

    The library has been around for about 5 years

    -Mike
    I have been in IC a few times in the past couple of years. Unfortunately the Bike Library has a very limited scope. I think what they are doing is great, but while I was there they had no bikes available and the few they did went very quickly. I ended up bringing my own and then collecting a couple more off of Craigs List.

    I met a couple of people that went to Goodwill and bought bikes to ride about for the couple of weeks they were there, then donated them back.

    The cycling structure in IC is much better than what I see in most areas. BTW I should be back there in another week or so for a few days.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

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    "Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
    RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
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    "Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
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    Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
    _krazygluon

  20. #20
    Senior Member Ekdog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greengage View Post
    gosh--didn't you know? Bike-sharing programs are the gateway to World Socialism! http://coloradoindependent.com/58885...-un-domination
    oh_noes..gif
    Last edited by Ekdog; 11-05-10 at 05:57 PM.

  21. #21
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    The only bike share programs that have ever existed in the cities that I have lived in were of the casual, "I've got a few extras for visitors, foreign exchange students and friends" variety. Sometimes they get shared all gone and sometimes people who have a bike with no rider will give it to me to share.

  22. #22
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
    The only bike share programs that have ever existed in the cities that I have lived in were of the casual, "I've got a few extras for visitors, foreign exchange students and friends" variety. Sometimes they get shared all gone and sometimes people who have a bike with no rider will give it to me to share.
    That is pretty much what I do. When family and friends come to visit we dig into my collection of mostly vintage stuff and go riding. I have found that folding bikes are the way to go because they can fit a wide variety of people very easily. I have way too many Raleigh Twentys for that reason. I also hand out/sell bikes to people that want or need them. I just gave my daughter a German trekking bike that I picked up a couple of years ago, she is living car free in Seattle and needed a bike to fill in the gaps in mass transit, so off it went.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

    "Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
    RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
    _Nicodemus

    "Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred
    Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
    _krazygluon

  23. #23
    aka Tom Reingold noglider's Avatar
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    Yeah, I have tons of guest bikes too. They come in handy. I also loan them out.
    Please email me rather than sending me a private message. My address is noglider@pobox.com

    Tom Reingold
    New York City and High Falls, NY
    noglider's ride blog

  24. #24
    Senior Member zeppinger's Avatar
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    There are excellent bike share programs in many large cities throughout South Korea. The best one I have used was in Changwon. The bikes were five speed cruisers with big front baskets and rear racks. They were very popular too since the entire city is relatively new and was built with bicycle lames on almost every street. There is a barrier between bike lanes and car traffic as well.

  25. #25
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roody View Post
    Some of the most successful bike share programs are funded and run by private companies. IIRC, the Velib in Paris is free to taxpayers, and the company that runs it makes a profit mainly by selling advertising space on the bike stations and kiosks.
    If I were looking at how bike sharing programs could be successful, I would try to follow and understand some of the current b-cycle installations. Contact b-cycle directly. They could be very helpful in laying out some sample business models and also in laying out the # of stations that go into a typical series of installations.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike from Iowa View Post
    We have a bike library. Here is their website:

    http://www.bikelibrary.org/

    Here is an article from today's paper about our excess bikes going to overseas users:

    http://www.press-citizen.com/article...into-the-world

    The library has been around for about 5 years

    -Mike
    The Iowa City program has been around for quite a while. I believe it's a different model from actual "bike sharing." If you were to study how they do it, you'd probably have a great model for bicycle lending.

    Bike sharing like b-cycle is a great way to handle the "last mile" issue for public transportation. Bike lending is a great way to get a bike for a week or two while you are visiting.

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