Ouch! And so well said!
These few telling words from Stacy Thompson, director of the Livable Streets Alliance, a transportation advocacy group watching out for the public interest in Boston Massachusetts — in the context of a critical commentary on the dockless bike wars that are presently ravaging cities and challenging governments around the world.
And this of course is what World Streets is supposed to be all about: The Politics of Transport in Cities. Satcy has put our challenge into a nutshell.
Happier days for Vélib’ in Paris
JCDecaux, which operated the Paris Vélib ‘self-service bicycle service for ten years before losing the market to Smovengo last year, said on March 8 that its successor was not up to the challenge of the delays accumulated in its launch.
The Smovengo consortium chosen last spring by the Autolib ‘Vélib’ Métropole union at the expense of JCDecaux, had promised to install 1,400 new stations (or 20,000 Vélib) by March 31st. According to the latest figures, only 345 stations were in service, making this schedule unreachable. Faced with the controversy and anger of Vélib’ users, the City of Paris announced that it was sending municipal staff to supervise the deployment and work of the provider, a rare decision
Paul DeMaio started The Bike-sharing World Map in 2007 to be the one-stop source for information about the global growth of bike-share services. The Bike-sharing World Map now shares information over 500 bike-share services including the services’ website, fleet and station size, and launch date.
A quick prevue: 2016 ended with a world-wide fleet of approximately 2,000,000 public use bicycles in automated and/or information technology controlled systems in approximately 1,175 cities, municipalities or district jurisdictions in 63 countries. The following online map is searchable for details on all indicated cities and operations.
Miriam Ricci, a Research Fellow at the Centre for Transport & Society at the University of the West of England, has recently completed a research report on bike sharing that will be of interest to our readers. Her paper is concerned with identifying and critically interpreting the available evidence on bike sharing to date, on both impacts and processes of implementation and operation.
The ten page analytic report is freely available online from Elsevier until July 19, 2015 at http://authors.elsevier.com/a/1R6t47sdbMZRLC. A short description and introduction to the report follows here.
EPI Bicycle Share Fact Sheet
The prevalence of bicycles in a community is an indicator of our ability to provide affordable transportation, lower traffic congestion, reduce air pollution, increase mobility, and provide exercise to the world’s growing population. Bike-sharing programs are one way to get cycles to the masses.
In the context of our search for creating a method for reliably and usefully benchmarking the sustainable transport performance of cities around the world – see https://worldstreets.wordpress.com/tag/benchmarking/ for first background – we would like to address our readers’ attention to the Copenhagenize Index for Bicycle Friendly Cities. In this short article you will find background information and reference on how they carry it out, as well as links to their results and conclusions.
We intend to continue to seek out and report on important benchmarking projects that can help us in our own thinking and efforts to create a more general approach to understanding city performance in the face of the tough challenges of sustainable transport, sustainable cities and sustainable lives. In addition to performance indicators for city cycling we are inventorying the state of the art in such areas as walking, public transport performance, parking, car restraint, mobility for specific underserved groups, shared transport, etc. Stay tuned.
Public Bicycle Share (PBS) Systems are growing in popularity and spreading across many cities and countries. In Asia, the number of PBS’ has grown close to a 100 from just one in 2007 and Asia also boasts of the largest system with about 90,000 cycles in Wuhan, China. Europe too saw the number of systems grow six fold in just six years.
Clean Air Asia has been working to raise the profile of Non Motorized Transport (NMT) and now with the University of Queensland is conducting this survey to understand the perception on PBS, especially in Asian cities. We request you to answer the questions to gives us better insights on PBS.
The “humble” bicycle has a major role in 21st century cities, large or small, North or South, rich or poor. Getting city cycling right is a matter of high priority when it comes to local and planetary environmental impacts, solid economics, affordability, fossil fuel and resource savings, public health, equity, democracy and quality of life. For all of those of our cities around the world who have over the last decades bought into the car-plus-speed lifestyle without giving it much thought, getting this transition right is a significant technical, social and political challenge.
Fortunately there is a large and fast expanding base of experience and information on the topic, which should guarantee success for all those who are not too lazy or in too much in a hurry to do their homework properly and lay a successful base for their project.
See the latest government announcements, vigorous discussions and media coverage of the proposed 2015 public bicycle project for George Town on our supporting Facebook site at https://www.facebook.com/SustainablePenang.
World Streets and the New Mobility Agenda are strong and consistent supporters of bike sharing projects created in university settings, particularly when planned and implemented on the basis of collaboration with students and faculty. We have reported on the excellent bike sharing project at Taiwan National University, and today we are pleased to share with you information just in from the Bike Sharing Project at Makerere University in Kampala Uganda. Projects like this not only improve mobility and environment for all within the target area, but also serve to prepare future leaders.
More than 600 cities around the globe have bike-share systems, and new systems are starting every year. The largest and most successful systems, in places such as China, Paris, London, and Washington, D.C., have helped to promote cycling as a viable and valued transport option.
The Institute for Transportation & Development Policy (ITDP) studied 25 bike-share systems throughout the world, analyzing which ones perform the best and why. That informed ITDP’s Bike Share Planning Guide, which has copious data and fascinating charts to pore over, helping cities create bike-share systems that will thrive
This guide evaluates international best practice in bike-share, helps to bridge the divide between developing and developed countries’ experiences to provide guidance on planning and implementing a successful bike-share system regardless of the location, size, or density of your city. For more information on the growth of bike-share systems, watch this Streetfilms video, Riding the Bike Share Boom.
As we are seeing in these pages Penang in general and Georgetown in particular are giving attention to the possibility of creating a public bicycle system for the city. As a first step they have issued a Request for Proposals which is shortly to come online. This is a great thing because there are many reasons to create conditions for safe and agreeable cycling on city streets across the state.
BICYCLING WITHIN A COMPREHENSIVE TRANSPORT PLAN,
TO SOLVING TRAFFIC CONGESTION
Dr Lim Mah Hui, Address to MPPP Council Meeting, October 25, 2013
We must start to draw up a bicycle strategy, policy and plan and this must be integrated into town planning. It should be coherent, not piece-meal and ad hoc. It must be bottom-up and not just top-down, i.e., the bicyclists must be intimately involved in the planning. The plan must include a budget
John Pucher (cycling guru and Professor of Transport Policy at Rutgers university) gave a public lecture on cycling in cities in LA earlier this week, introducing his new book “City Cycling” to an attentive audience. Kent Strumpell of the City of LA Bicycle Advisory Committee was there taking notes. Which he kindly shares with us here: Continue reading
NEW REPORT: Public bikesharing—the shared use of a bicycle fleet—is an innovative transportation strategy that has recently emerged in major North American cities. Information technology (IT)-based bikesharing systems typically position bicycles throughout an urban environment, among a network of docking stations, for immediate access. Trips can be one-way, round-trip, or both, depending on the operator. Bikesharing can serve as both a first-and-last mile (connector to other modes) and a many-mile solution. Continue reading
A city known for its sea of yellow taxis and crowded streets, New York is becoming a place no one thought was possible: bikeable.
New York City is at the tipping point of becoming one of the world’s great bicycling cities. Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan and the New York City Department of Transportation (DoT) have done a tremendous job creating a more bicycle-friendly New York. According to the DoT, commuter cycling increased by 13% between 2009 and 2010. In the last five years, bicycle ridership has doubled.
A city known for its sea of yellow taxis and crowded streets, New York City is becoming a town no one thought was possible. With this bike share plan, New York City will transform itself into the nation’s top bicycling city. All eyes will be on us to see if the program succeeds or fails. Bike sharing is such an important change, and change is always challenging. But this will be a game-changer for NYC; get ready for it.
* * * Click here for article.
As regular readers of World Streets by now know well, we consider bicycles as the mine canaries of sustainable transport and sustainable cities. When you can hear them singing, everything is going pretty much in the right direction. But silence or absence, and hey you are in deep trouble. As part of our long-term watching brief under our free-for-all World City Bike Collaborative since 2005, we try to keep track of what is going on both at the leading and the lagging edge with both bikes and infrastructure, and public bicycle systems, in all parts of the world, from China and Africa, to Paris and Portland. Continue reading
Bike sharing, despite all that is going on world wide in many places, is still very much a new concept that still harbors many unknowns. Including a very wide range of “business plans” as needed to get them started and keep them going. Associate editor, Gail Jennings, reports on how bike sharing looks from an African perspective. Continue reading
We are seeing some pretty good city-size public bike systems in cities like Paris, Barcelona, Lyon, and more recently Montreal — and more than fifty smaller systems, most of which in Europe and all doing a pretty fair job at what they have set out to do. That’s just fine. But what about the mega-cities of Latin America?
Will shared bike projects work out there? And if they are to have a shot at success how should they be planned, configured, implemented and then made to do the job day after day in the full stream of the continent’s exciting traffic and city life.
That was the issue that Eric Britton of the New Mobility Partnerships and World Streets was asked to address in an open brainstorm organized by the WRI EMBARQ team in Cuernavaca Mexico on 2 July 2009.
* Click here for PowerPoint presentation: ecoplan.org/library/ws-embarq.ppt
Britton was asked specifically to report on the role that public or shared bike systems might eventually play in Latin American cities, against the background of their successful implementation for the most part in rather different environments. There has been considerable interest shown by politicians, some planners and transporters, public interest groups (mainly cyclists of course) and the media across the region over the last year or so. But how to move ahead with a concept which until now has been largely successful in European cities, under circumstances on the ground that differ considerably in most cases.
* Click here for PowerPoint presentation: http://ecoplan.org/library/ws-embarq.ppt
“What next?” — Keep pedaling
This presentation represents his attempt to open up the discussions and at the same time to plant a few seeds. He looks for clues to what might be adapted and approached quite differently in these for the most part quite different environments. His closing message: Keep on pedaling, you can get there.
World Public Bike Consortium at www.publicbike.newmobility.org (Offers extensive references and sources.)