That from a CaBi news article on re-balancing
T St & New Hampshire Ave NW. “We call it the beast” TC jokes, “because that station is insatiable. As soon as you fill it up, the bikes are gone.”
It sounds like they use a sort of "hub and spoke" system, dumping bikes from full stations at large stations and then moving those to empties.
Each van is given an assigned “territory” that they will service. These zones are relatively small, ensuring that each van spends as much time as possible visiting stations and less time traveling between them. To make this easier, TC set up these zones after identifying “transfer stations” – stations large and popular enough to accommodate a complete 25-bike offload while still maintaining open docks. The morning rebalancing teams use Union Station & Columbus Circle, Thomas Circle and Dupont Circle & Massachusetts Ave as staging points, allowing the vans in the downtown zone to drop off bikes and keep maintaining stations. This also allows the vans in Capitol Hill and Columbia Heights pick up needed bikes without having to travel all the way downtown.
And more innovation is on the way
there are some developments in the works that will make a difference for the rebalancing team and our members. The operations staff is working on permits that will allow them to operate daily bike corrals in a couple of key downtown areas, mitigating some of the need for open docks to those nearby. To serve these corrals, TC and his staff are expecting to receive a new, larger truck that will help clear the corrals and quickly move a lot of bikes to residential areas where members are waiting for them. Look for an announcement about this new service in the coming months.
The whole article is interesting.