The many ways of running a bike-share system
From West Palm Beach to New York City, bike-share programs are proliferating. Their financing and their scope vary.
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At CNU-20 in West Palm Beach, roughly 350 attendees took to two wheels, thanks to a bike-share demonstration program organized by DecoBike LLC.
“Normally there’s no such thing as a traveling bike-share program,” says Colby Reese, chief marketing officer for DecoBike. But for CNU-20, the Miami Beach-based company, in cooperation from the West Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority, decided to place three bike-share docking stations in the downtown from May 9 to May 12. CNU participants signed up for passes entitling them to ride free for up to four hours at a stretch.
The four-day bike program was the latest example of the introduction of bike-share programs across the country. Bike-sharing is expected to arrive in the nation’s largest city in late July. The New York City Department of Transportation has proposed the first 420 locations of Citi Bike, a program that will be operated by a subsidiary of Alta Bicycle Share. The DOT and Alta—which currently runs bike-share systems in Boston and Washington—expect to have 600 docking stations in operation within months.
By summer 2013, New York is envisioning a fleet of 10,000 bikes—the largest such program in the US. Cyclists will pay $95 a year for access to the bikes.