I have witnessed bike sharing programs during some of my travels, namely in Paris and Washington, D.C., however I am skeptical if a bike sharing program would make it in NYC. People generally treat the city in a very crappy fashion by throwing trash on the ground, tagging public spaces with graffiti, spitting gum on the street, tossing cigarette butts anywhere but the trash, etc. I have a sinking suspicion that a bike sharing program would be like Disneyland for those that have no respect for public spaces or property. It would be taken as a grand opportunity to wantonly destroy something that otherwise is a fabulous concept.
Overall I think bike sharing is an awesome idea, but I would be interested in statistics related to the condition of the bikes after several months of use. Maybe I'll poke around when I have some free time, but if others have experience with bike sharing programs or have done their own research, feel free to chime in as we would love to hear from you.
The text below was sent to us via our Submit Your Hack link and it is a bit of corporate social responsibility promo for an insurance company, but it relates to bikes and an attempt to hack our current transit system so what the heck. Take it away Heather . . .
This is Heather Stephenson from Edelman Public Relations writing on behalf of B-cycle and my client Humana, a sponsor of B-cycle.
If you have a minute, because of your discussion of commuting and
perspective on biking in major cities, I thought you would be
interested in the country’s first large-scale citywide bike-sharing
system being launched on Earth Day, April 22, in Denver.
The program will launch 500 B-cycles located at 40-50 B-stations around the city, which offer not only a green alternative to cars and cabs, but also encourage healthy behavior.
Why does one of the country’s largest health insurers want to get more people on bikes? Because just three hours of pedaling a week can reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke by 50 percent, says the League of American Bicyclists. Humana hopes that B-cycle can be one part of many solutions to America’s obesity and environmental problems, making it easier for people to lead healthier, greener lives.
Each bike is equipped with computers to track mileage, calories burned and carbon offsets. The tracking enables riders to monitor their personal fitness and contributions to the city’s green efforts while also helping to connect B-cycle users with one another at www.Bcycle.com.
If you would like to bring B-cycle to your community, go here to vote (http://www.bcycle.com/