Sunday, July 20, 2008

Velib problems

This is the first major problem I've heard of with the Velib system in Paris. I'm not aware of any similar problems with Tulsa's first-in-the-nation Tulsa Townies, or the new Rack & Roll system. Still, I have to wonder about the long-term viability of a plan that's lost over 25% of their bicycles. They want to expand the system into the suburbs, but if losses are this high, how can they afford replacements?

Thieves ride off with 3,000 of Paris's free bicycles

Thursday, 17 July 2008

The self-service, Parisian bike-for-hire – the vélib' – was intended mostly for short rides when it was introduced 12 months ago, reports The Independent.

More than 3,000 of the sturdy grey bicycles have gone missing since then. Some have turned up as far away as Romania and, according to one report, Australia. Another 3,000 have been deliberately destroyed or damaged. But the 16,000 bikes in circulation have proved extremely popular.


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Blogger lemmiwinks said...

What a shame. Humanities capacity to act like a jerk rarely surprises me though.

2:17 AM  
Blogger GB said...

Sometimes I wonder if it's really stupidity.
Many car-drivers are angry against bicycles, maybe some of them express this rage against these bikes.
Wait a minute... seems like it would be stupidity too !

2:35 AM  
Blogger Fritz said...

I'm looking at a proposal right now to introduce a bike sharing program in Palo Alto, California. The experience of the consultant for this program is that 1/3 of bikes are stolen and 1/3 are vandalized each year, with a replacement cost of a little over $1000 per bike for the bikes Palo Alto is considering.

3:38 PM  
Blogger Ed W said...

You'd think that requiring a credit card would keep theft and vandalism to a minimum, but then again, we think like law-abiding people.

I'm going to contact the Tulsa Townie organization, and see if they've had similar results. Granted, the system is hardly city-wide. It's mostly down along the river park area. But they plan to expand it, so it may be a good question to ask.

4:50 PM  
Blogger Fritz said...

I didn't think of this earlier, but Google has free loaner bikes for use by their employees to get around their sprawling campus in Mountain View. The bikes are just left outside the buildings -- no locks, no kiosks. I've seen them miles away south to San Jose and north to San Mateo.

1:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

there's a 150 euro deposit to cover theft, think they'd be hard to steal if you didn't at least get it legitimately

5:36 AM  

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