City Bike Sharing: Feasible for Hoboken?
Bike sharing programs work in big cities, but Hoboken?
Updating this story from over a year ago, it seems that these citywide bike-sharing programs are working in some cities across the world.
Hoboken411 reader Adrian – who’s been following the many Hertz on Demand (formerly Connect by Hertz) stories – wonders why City Hall isn’t considering this option? Because they won’t make money from it?
“If City Hall really wants to get cars off the street, then why are they not investing in a scheme like this?
I have used the same scheme in Paris and it is brilliant. Costs nothing for the first 30 minutes, then charged cheaply.
The best thing about the scheme? IT COSTS THE CITY $0. Most of the schemes are sponsored by banks, or by advertising companies that sell the space at the bike sheds, or on the bikes themselves. The bikes are cumbersome and hardly ever get stolen.
Would it be unusual for a small city like Hoboken to have this scheme? Absolutely. Would it directly reduce the number of unnecessary journeys in Hoboken by car? Absolutely. Would people use it? Absolutely. City gets the health spin, as well as the reduction in traffic.
We could even team up with Weehawken, Bayonne, Jersey City etc and do a joint scheme.
See original story from 2009 after the jump!
Would “Bixi” Bikes work in Hoboken?
Can Hoboken sustain such a program?
The concept is simple. High-tech “rent-a-bikes” located at many strategic areas around the city. “Docking stations” that allow you to use the bikes for one-way trips, if desired – leaving it at your destination for other people to use. Sophisticated GPS tracking and locking systems that prevent theft, automated billing, and much more.
Montreal currently has 300 of these docking stations and 3,000 bikes in use.
If you explore the Bixi Website a bit, it seems as if they’ve thought this concept through quite well. Take a look at this google map they built, and you can see that no two Bixi Stations are more than “300 meters” apart (almost 1000 feet for us still on the imperial measurement system).
Judging by the area in use – Montreal has around 15 square miles covered by these Bixi bike stations… which would mean that according to their model, Hoboken would be able to get by with about 20 stations. But seeing that our two recent Bike Lanes were a “crowning achievement” for Hoboken, this may just be a bit too progressive for our city.
Would this work in Hoboken? What key areas besides the PATH station would be good locations?
(FYI – “Bixi” is a marriage of the words Bike and Taxi… Clever, eh?)