College Park and the university said in October they were negotiating a one-year contract with Alta Bicycle Share, the company that runs Capital Bikeshare, to install bike stations, supply bicycles and operate the system. The plan was to have Capital Bikeshare running by Feb. 1.
Terry A. Schum, director of planning for College Park, said the city was very close to signing the agreement with Alta, but it is now on hold due to Public Bike System Co.’sfiling for bankruptcy protection last month. Public Bike System is one of Alta’s main equipment and technology suppliers.
As you may know, this award recognizes the many ways that our campus is supporting bicycle use, from planning and enforcing safe streets, to hosting free bicycling classes, to helmet giveaways, and more.
This designation underscores GU's leadership on sustainable transportation, making Georgetown the first campus in the District of Columbia to receive this award and one of only 75 BFU campuses in the country to date.
It also has a practical component; through GU's participation, we will receive free consulting from the League of American Bicyclists on additional bicycle-friendly opportunities for the campus.
Georgetown could not have achieved this accomplishment without each of you, from your contributions to the application process, to your ongoing efforts to support bicycling.
We would also like to recognize and thank Greg Miller (SFS '14) and Oltan Akin (MSB '15), the two undergraduate Sustainability Fellows who worked under the guidance of the Office of Sustainability to perform and submit Georgetown's BFU assessment, and without whom this accomplishment would not be possible.
You can learn more about Georgetown's BFU process here, and find more information about Bicycling at Georgetown at http://sustainability.georgetown.edu/bicycling/. A sign displaying the designation is also now proudly displayed behind the Bike-share station outside GU's Main Gates (See attached).
That's great for them, but on to silver I say. They could pay to add more bikeshare stations to the main campus and the law school campus - there's only 1 now. They could help turn the Glen Echo Trolley ROW that passes through campus into a bike trail. They could make sure that the Georgetown boathouse doesn't negatively impact the Capital Crescent Trail. There's a lot of room for improvement.
Alta, the company that operates Capital Bikeshare for the local transportation departments that own it, announced today that they signed a deal with 8D Technologies, the original provider for Bixi to launch and operate the next generation of bike share in 2014.
The next genereation of the 8D system, named BSSv4 builds upon the current BSSv3 platform that CaBi uses now.
The new system has a sleed design, merges the electronics boards and screens, and has an improved docking mechanism linking the bikes to the stations. Other BSSv4 enhancements include.
Key distribution from the kiosk
Account management and bike reservations through a new mobile application
Enhanced power management solutions
Improved docking/undocking mechanism
So it seems Alta wasted no time adjusting to the Bixi bankruptcy.
On Monday, as news spread that Bixi had laid off its interim CEO and 11 other employees, 8D and Alta Bicycle Share of Portland, Ore., another company with ties to Bixi, announced they were forming an alliance to sell bike-sharing systems to cities around the world.
Under the deal announced Monday, 8D will provide software, electronics and docking stations, while Alta will operate the systems. They have not decided which bikes to use, 8D CEO Isabelle Bettez said in an interview.
She said 8D will consider making an offer to buy Bixi’s operations.
So, I'm on my second capital bikeshare key. I kept my first one on my key ring and the paint wore off so that I couldn't read the number, then it broke. So now, I keep it on a separate key ring and I only grab it when I need it. But sometimes I forget it, or think that I could use it and it is at home. It would be great if they could make them like Thor's hammer where when I call for it it would just come to me, but we're talking about the Canadians here, so that won't happen.
Anyway, someone needs to develop and market a case for your CaBi key. Something that covers and protects it, gives it a little added strength, but is easy to pop open to take the key out. Like one of those old cigarette cases that hot but dangerous women carry around in movies from the 40's and then pack their cigarette against. But sized for a CaBi key. Anyhoo, I will take 5%*. That is all.
Mia Birk, vice president of Alta Bicycle Share, which operates eight Bixi-provided bike-share systems in the United States and Melbourne, Australia, said in an email shortly after the bankruptcy announcement that operations of those systems would be unaffected.
"Our systems across the country — in Washington, D.C., Boston, New York City, Chicago, the Bay Area, Columbus, OH, and Chattanooga, TN — are up and running and ABS will ensure that they continue to operate without interruption,” Birk wrote. “Given our plans to expand current systems and launch new systems this year, we're in constant communication with both PBSC as well as its suppliers to ensure we can do so successfully.”
And from the Times article
[Montreal] is giving the company an additional 1.5 million Canadian dollars to allow operations to continue.
Bixi, the Canadian company that builds the bikes, docks, software and station that are used by Capital Bikeshare (as well as Divvy, Citibike and dozens of other cities) has filed for bankruptcy protection.
The Public Bike System Company’s decision to seek federal protection from creditors owed millions forced the city of Montreal to take over its local bike-sharing program to protect its investment.
The development was announced Monday by Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre.
“If Bixi can be saved, it’s through the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act,” the Montreal mayor was quoted as saying.
The problem appears to be a failure to pay by some cities
The CBC quoted the troubled company as tying its cash-flow problems to the development of “new proprietary technology for international clients.”
The story further claimed that “persistent delays and problems with the technology” had prompted “many clients,” including Chicago, to withhold payments. Chicago and New York together owe Bixi $5.6 million, according to the CBC.
It's unclear how or how much this will effect CaBi. Bixi Toronto seems unconcerned. Just because the company has gone bankrupt, that doesn't mean CaBi won't be able to buy any more equipment. After all, you can still buy Twinkies and Corvettes.
BTW, the article on Toronot includes this interesting factoid on how the progam was paid for
Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong avoided using taxpayer’s money to directly acquire Bixi, with a clever toilets-for-bicycles swap. City council let Astral Media, a division of Bell Media, off the hook on the company’s commitment to open 11 public toilets in Toronto in exchange for $5-million. The city used the cash to pay off Bixi’s debt to Toronto.
No surprise really, usage goes down when it is cold, or when it rains or when it is dark. But it's nice to see how much those factors matter. Not as much as some critics like to contend. This is certainly not a direct correlation to biking in general (for one thing, CaBi is closed when it snows, but personal bikes are not), but the two probably have more in common than not. I maintain my belief that one benefit of bike sharing is the massive amount of data it provides to transportation researchers.
This beats Metro and DASH, which have farebox recovery rates between 30 percent and 50 percent. Alexandria’s little eight-station system is well on its way to becoming a 16-station system by the spring and a 30-station system next year. Arlington — bless its transit-oriented heart — has placed eight stations along the Arlington-Alexandria border to improve connectivity.
Systemwide, it moves about 7,000 people per day, a figure that’s comparable to the 11,000 daily users of Alexandria’s DASH bus system.