Bike-Sharing $uck$?

Via Waylon Lewis
on Jun 14, 2010
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Why are Bike Sharing systems so Expensive? Is Tony Soprano involved?

Bcycle, a system we’ve been big fans of, and have covered often in the past, just debuted in Denver. It’s a fancy-cool bike sharing system. Click the excerpt above to read the article.

All I gotta say is, $1,000,000 for 400 bikes? They better be made of gold and glittering with diamonds.

$1 million bucks? Are you [email protected]#$%^k&*()(*^@!g kidding me?

Put me in charge of a city’s bike share system, and I’d partner with some bike company, get the rides for close to free in return for their logos on the bikes (of course) and on the kiosks, and shout-outs in City materials…and we’d do it in six months, man. This thing took yeeeears.

So why’s is take so long? Red tape? Why’s it so expensive? ‘Cause the whole system seems needlessly complicated. You could go with a simple bike shed, bike maintenance team and acquire thousands of “green bikes”, a basic system just like many universities have had for years. And even if you lost many bikes to attrition, theft, vandalism…you’d still get a whole helluva lot more bikes for a lot less dough.

Okay, here’s the part where folks who actually know something about bike sharing fill me in on the vast quantities of commonsense information I haven’t thought of, and explain to me why 400 bikes cost Denver $1,000,000 and the system took years to set up.



About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


2 Responses to “Bike-Sharing $uck$?”

  1. Did you ever consider that perhaps in life, things aren't supposed to make sense, be logical, or be "fair". I personally believe that the human ego wants to create problems, greed, strife, corruption, and basically screw everything up on purpose. So of course a million dollars for bikes is absurd. yes it is. next question. Oh, and that question is, why can we put a man on the moon but can't find Bin Laden?

  2. […] memberships for Boulder B-cycle cost just $50 and include the first 60 minutes of any individual ride. Day passes are only $5 and come […]