Council will hear a report from staff next week regarding the implementation and roll-out of a new public bike share system in Vancouver.
It’s an exciting program that staff have thought through very carefully, working to meet the demand for new cycling infrastructure and add Vancouver to the more than 500 cities worldwide with bike share programs already in place. A recent poll found 70% support in Metro Vancouver for a public bike share program.
1500 new shared bicycles will be placed around Downtown, the West End, Mount Pleasant, Fairview, and Kitsilano. The bikes will be placed at 125 accessibly located docking stations, sited every 2-3 blocks.
Each station will also feature an innovative helmet vending station, with clean and affordable helmets available for rent to users who don’t bring their own.
The program has been very successful in other cities as an important extension of the transportation system, with many users combining transit journeys with cycling trips of less than 5-10 blocks. The average trip duration in New York’s new public bike share system has been just 19 minutes, with over 2 million kilometres traveled on 529,000 trips in its first month alone.
The program has been carefully reviewed by City staff, and is based on the New York model: a private company will run the program, and assume the financial risk. Sponsorships will be used to help provide funding, to protect taxpayers.
Cycling is now the fastest-growing transportation mode in Vancouver, with cycling trips up 40% from 2008 to 2011 for an average of 66,500 cycling trips every day. As cycling infrastructure has undergone important safety upgrades, cycling trips by women have increased by 93% in just three years.
For the full staff report on implementing public bike share in Vancouver, click here: