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I fear the same fate for us.
Look up Vélib' and let your mind be blown.
The Daily News sucks donkey balls.
@18, thank you, but sadly I leave tomorrow morning. I'll add the Black Friar to my list for if I'm fortunate enough to get a next time.
Why not let private enterprise SoBi handle it. Their bike doesn't require specialized racks and has all the technology needed to sign up and rent right on the bike itself!
But, I know, those are First World countries, whereas we are a Third World country, and we steal things more, or something.
plus, in both of those socialist countries, they have TAXES!
Luckily, we are God's chosen, and we dont believe in em.
Power to the Pedal
Bicycle Built for You
I just didn't see many share bikes. I wasn't about it to do it, not with the crowded streets and traffic being mirror image, but I was curious about the whole thing so I was on the lookout. I saw maybe 100 non-share bikes on the streets while I was there, and of course thousands of motor vehicles. Biking just isn't popular in the streets of London regardless of what anyone might want to say otherwise.
Paris is a bit different. The share bikes were more popular, but there didn't seem to be many non-share bikes there. Bicycling seems to be tourist activity. When the locals aren't walking or taking the Metro, they're either in a car of some sort (including taxi), a bus, or on a motorcycle or scooter.
Paris, in particular, because of its compact size, struck me as a good place for electric cars. Especially seeing as how France gets 100% of its electricity from nukes, and therefore the swap from gas or diesel to electric would reduce carbon emissions by 100% per conversion. There are some electric share cars there, but I don't know how popular they are.
The only way these things could ever be popular in Seattle is if they were electrified. Which would be interesting, because any cycle with a motor (electric or gas) must be licensed and registered and pay a road use tax, and the rider must have a motorcycle endorsement on his driver's license. Let's see the bike nazis get around that one.
I simply didn't see what you saw: Those Barclays bikes got plenty of use, and the turnover at the racks I was near (the Russell Square tube stop as well) was high during the course of a weekday.
I must have walked between King's Cross and the Thames a dozen times, by various routes, including many times through Russell Square. There were some bicyclists, but almost all of them were private bikes. Barclay bikes were a rare sight. So rare that, after three or four days I had my eyes peeled looking for them. They were all over the place in racks, but no one was riding them.
Paris, like I say, was a somewhat different story. More of them there, no denying it. After London, I expected to be chortling about the bullshit bike sharing programs, but the one in Paris seems fairly popular with tourists. I don't want to overstate that, though. We were there for six days and saw maybe 100 share bikes in use, compared with thousands of motor vehicles.
One thing to say about both cities, and about European cities in general, is that American tourists go to the central, old parts. Not so much to the newer areas and suburbs, which wherever you go are even more motor-centric. Even "successful" bike-share programs are basically central city affairs.
I'd been there a bunch of times before, but usually on business and mostly in a chauffered vehicle. I like to walk, and did as much walking this time as I had done on all the other visits combined. I was tempted by the share bikes a couple times, but then I thought about the street layout and decided to keep walking.
Perhaps it's a system that has accrued over 21 MILLION uses in under 3 years? http://www.tfl.gov.uk/roadusers/cycling/…
Or perhaps it's a system that, on the whole, covers all of its operating expenses with user fees? http://www.tbd.com/blogs/tbd-on-foot/201…
Perhaps it's a system that replaced over 44,000 vehicle trips in just its first 7 months of operation? http://denver.bcycle.com/News.aspx?itemi…
Failures, all of them. Only tourists use bike share, and very few of THEM even.