There’s a must-read article on the Atlanta Magazine website this week for any bicycling advocate in Atlanta: Six lessons Atlanta can learn from New York’s bikeshare woes : The benefit of being a late adopter is learning from others’ mistakes.
The first of the six is this:
Make sure the equipment works. File this under obvious but important. Rampant software glitches and faulty “docking stations” (rental kiosks) marred the launch of Citi Bike and frustrated many riders eager to embrace the system.
Yes to this. I was able to experience the frustration of a glitch-ridden system this week during a visit to Chattanooga, where there is an extensive bike-share program with docking stations all over the center of the city.
After seeing monthly-card-holding locals ride around on the bikes, I tried to get one myself as a daily rental. I walked all around Downtown Chattanooga to six different stations with no luck as the touch screens froze up on every one half way through the process. No bike for me.
Atlanta is launching its own bike-share program in 2015. I’m glad to read that we’ll be using a different system for bike stations:
The good news for Atlanta is that Cycle Hop has partnered with a company called Social Bicycles to provide a more nimble technology. The booking and tracking device is fitted to the bike itself, rather than to a docking station.
New York City’s Citi Bike program has been a runaway success when it comes to annual memberships, but it has been less successful with attracting casual, one-day riders. By coincidence or not, the system is managed by the same company, Alta, behind Chattanooga’s bike share.
Let’s hope Atlanta can learn from the mistakes made elsewhere and launch a great bike share program. I think there’s a real chance it to be popular here.
"Cycle Atlanta…details the city’s ambitious strategy to add 31 miles of bike-friendly lanes and paths to streets inside the Beltline, doubling the number of bike-safe miles within that proposed loop of transit, trails and parks."
— Drivers, bicyclists to share more road: intown streets allow for safer mix of traffic Atlanta Journal Constitution 11/12/13
"Some residents even associate highly visible street changes, like bike lanes, with the displacement of long-time black residents in favor of younger, often white newcomers. “You hear that bike lanes are white lanes"
— Bike Lanes in Black and White | Peopleforbikes.org, 10/21/2013
"As a parent, the thing I love most about Atlanta Streets Alive is how much my kids love it. That gives me hope for a day in our city when my kids can bike or walk safely by themselves, and experience the joy and independence of getting somewhere on their own."
Rebecca Serna, executive director of the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition
Streets Alive Wants 4 Events In ‘14, Including West End Route | Curbed Atlanta, 10/16/2013