Seattle's Bike Share Program Is Doing "Pretty Well" Six Months After Launch

Comments

1
Could have saved the time spent writing this puff piece and just run Pronto's press release verbatim.
2
"Sturdier stuff than this winter"? That was the mildest winter I can remember. Seriously, how many days without rain? Average highs in the 50s instead of 40s. I've only seen one person riding these things ever. So that's "pretty well"?
3
@1: You must not have seen Pronto's press release.
4
I didn't see a helmet dipenser.
5
I didn't see a helmet dispenser.
6
@2: "I've only seen one person riding these things ever." You're either blind, or are never in downtown Seattle or the U District.
7
I dig using Pronto, but I don't recommend them for hills of any size. The bikes are *heavy*. Also, don't ride away from the station immediately after taking one - check to make sure the breaks and gears work first, so if you get a dud, you can switch it out. I had this happen to me a couple of times - happily, when you dock a bike, you can press a button to notify them that it needs repair, and they won't allow it to be loaned out until the issue is fixed.
8
@2

I ride my bike to Capitol Hill every day and see at least 5 or 6 pronto bikes being used every time.
9
I'm surprised at the number of Pronto bikes I've seen that will obviously not get returned within 30 minutes (i.e. four guys with four Pronto bikes were playing catch at Green Lake). I wonder how many people decide to just pay extra to keep the bikes for hours.
10
I heard that Pronto bikes are only racking up an average of one mile per day, or about 10 minutes of low-speed cycling. If that's true, is that a success? Or do we have to wait until use picks up to label it a success?
11
@10, there's not really a whole ton of stations encouraging you to try to do long distance biking on the things.

I am saddened to see they haven't figured out helmet rentals yet.
12
"It's not every day, by the way, that the head of a multi-million dollar public-private partnership walks you through their budget numbers. But Houser affably did just that..."

No, it is her job. Make an appointment with any nonprofit executive, public/private or otherwise, and they will do exactly the same. Fucking credulous crap.
13
This looks like a "going out of business" sale. I haven't heard any other bike share system doing promotions. To be fair, the system is set up to fail (running for profit, a tiny number of bikes/stations/etc).

In any regard, NYC got 2.2 rides per bike per day in February (while covered in snow) and is in trouble financially. Seattle has gotten 0.5 rides/bike/day over the course of it's life. If Pronto Bike Share is around by next October, i'll be surprised.
14
I just wish they could have been more creative on where to site the bike stations as to not take up very very valuable on-street parking spots. The one near Madison market is incredibly frustraing. they could have sited them on larger sidewalks or in off-street parking lots near the sidewalk. Church or school parking lots for example.

I wonder if they're paying the city for any use or right-of-way of streets.
15
@14 probably about as much as Volvo, Ford, Toyota, Honda, Scion, and Chevy are paying in right-of-way fees.
16
Pronto bikes are a one-and-done phenomenon. People will try them once to say they did. Problem? Seattle is nothing but hills. It's the hills, stupid. Despite the unshakable enthusiasm of "bike activists," Seattle is the worst place in the world to ride a bike. Pronto was doomed by Seattle's geography before it even began.
17
@16: You're right. That's why no one rides bikes in Seattle.
18
@15 im referring to taking over public road parking space for the bike stations. not referring to the riding of the bikes on the road.
19
@18 so am I
20
@18 there are easily 1,000 public road parking spaces for the car stations for every road parking bike station.
21
@20 better design and site selction of the bike stations could have allowed for maintaining public, highly used parking spaces on public steets for cars AND allowed for Pronto to install their bike stations. lazy, anti-car bias by the city folks didnt implement the most elegant solution. i would refer to DC as a place that did it well.
22
@20 better design and site selction of the bike stations could have allowed for maintaining public, highly used parking spaces on public steets for cars AND allowed for Pronto to install their bike stations. lazy, anti-car bias by the city created an inelegant solution.

i would refer to DC as a place that did it well.
23
@22 blah blah blah blah blah bitches never quit bitching https://arlingtongop.wordpress.com/2011/…
24
Eliminating King County's helmet law would help. The idea of a shared helmet has a bit too much of a "yuk" factor. Besides, I always ride like I don't helmet on even when I do.