You are not logged in.

#1 2013-06-22 05:30:28

MichaelBluejay
Webmaster
From: Austin, TX
Registered: 2008-05-26
Posts: 1,173
Website

The Austin B-Cycle thread

Many large cities have kiosks where you can rent bicycles by the hour or by the day.  Now, Austin will be joining those ranks.  Plans are to have the first kiosks installed by the end of the year, with more to come next year.

http://www.kvue.com/news/editors-pick/A … 38381.html

Offline

#2 2013-11-06 13:30:03

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 261

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Should be be surprised?  NYC bike share program works safely, contra Puscher's and others' predictions of carnage:  http://davesbikeblog.squarespace.com/bl … -dont.html

Offline

#3 2014-01-17 12:01:57

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 261

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Offline

#4 2014-01-29 16:10:03

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 261

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

http://www.curbingcars.com/bixi-goes-ba … /#more-683  Bad news:  Bixi bankruptcy doesn't bode well for bike share business.  Short term problem?

37,000: Number of Bixi bikes in operation around the world.

15: Number of cities that have adopted Bixi, including London and New York.

5,000: Number of Bixis on Montreal streets in 2013

Last edited by Jack (2014-01-29 16:12:40)

Offline

#5 2014-01-30 11:02:08

cycling74
Member
Registered: 2008-09-28
Posts: 61

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

The good news is that Austin's B-Cycle doesn't use Bixi.

http://dc.streetsblog.org/2014/01/22/wh … ory-wrong/

Offline

#6 2014-01-30 11:53:12

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 261

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

http://www.cts.umn.edu/Publications/cat … /niceride/
Studying how bike share stations are chosen, use for transportation for access
to jobs

Offline

#7 2014-02-01 00:32:44

badgnome
Member
Registered: 2012-01-26
Posts: 50

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

I saw them setting up a new location just south of the Dog and Duck pub yesterday.  Good spot!  Now they need some East Austin ones.

Offline

#8 2014-04-25 19:01:10

MichaelBluejay
Webmaster
From: Austin, TX
Registered: 2008-05-26
Posts: 1,173
Website

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Austin's BCycle bike sharing program set the national record for checkouts per bike per day (10.1) on March 14 during SXSW, beating NYC's old record of 7.2.

The system now has 40 stations and 275 bikes.

I'd like to point out that BCycle's Executive Director is Elliott McFadden, who started Austin CarShare, and also ran the popular "Austin on Two Wheels" blog.  While both projects are now defunct, they still served to advance progress.  Austin CarShare proved that the concept could work and paved the way for the successful Car2Go system, and the blog was popular and a fine read.  Man, that guy gets around.

http://Austin.BCycle.com/

Offline

#9 2014-04-26 00:23:17

dougmc
Administrator
Registered: 2008-06-01
Posts: 549

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

He's also the builder at http://www.violetcrowncycles.com/ .  At least I assume he's still doing this ...

Offline

#10 2014-05-02 11:52:16

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 261

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Short piece on NYC bike share, noodling about how to make it work in Los Angeles.  "Walkability" focus.  http://la.streetsblog.org/2014/02/04/le … lkability/

Offline

#11 2014-08-14 17:07:04

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 261

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Jack wrote:

Should be be surprised?  NYC bike share program works safely, contra Puscher's and others' predictions of carnage:  http://davesbikeblog.squarespace.com/bl … -dont.html

And still no fatalities with bike share, apparently.  http://grist.org/list/u-s-bikeshares-ha … aign=daily

Offline

#12 2014-08-15 00:19:49

dougmc
Administrator
Registered: 2008-06-01
Posts: 549

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

The last time I looked the statistics showed that the by-mile fatality statistics for cyclists were about twice that of motorists nationwide, so that would be about 3.0 per 100 million bicycle miles, or one fatality for every 33 million bicycle miles.

The NYC bike share has estimated about 15 million miles of riding so far, and so assuming that they have the same risk of death as "average" cyclists I'd expect about half a fatality from that ... so they've beaten the odds, but not by a statistically significant amount yet.

Now, don't get me wrong ... I'm glad that nobody has died, but it's really far too soon to attribute that to any emphasis they have on safety or anything else -- it could just be luck so far.

Offline

#13 2014-09-13 20:47:42

MichaelBluejay
Webmaster
From: Austin, TX
Registered: 2008-05-26
Posts: 1,173
Website

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

What do Car2Go and Austin B-Cycle have in common?

Only two-stars on Yelp.

Car2Go on Yelp

Austin B-Cycle on Yelp

Offline

#14 2014-11-16 15:53:49

MichaelBluejay
Webmaster
From: Austin, TX
Registered: 2008-05-26
Posts: 1,173
Website

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Well, Austin B-Cycle is now down to 1.5 stars, for the same reasons as before:  seemingly deceptive pricing, and unsympathetic/rude customer service.

These are both apparently long-term problems, too bad management doesn't seem to be paying attention.

Offline

#15 2014-11-18 12:29:28

cycling74
Member
Registered: 2008-09-28
Posts: 61

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Looks like bad reviews are from people who are not familiar with how the B-Cycle rentals work. It's the same in every city, but for a new user who sees only the words 24 hours and $8, it's confusing.

The first time I checked one out I did it wrong and was charged $8 even though I had a year membership. One call and it was refunded.

I use B-Cycle almost daily and it's great. I use car2go in combination and while both services had their startup issues, they are continuing to make improvements. For example, now B-Cycle sends a confirmation email when checking in a bike. Car2Go now AUTOMATICALLY ends your rental 15 second after you insert the key back into the "check in" slot and exit the vehicle.

Looks like I need to leave this review on Yelp sometime to help balance out the reviews.

Offline

#16 2015-01-30 11:50:43

MichaelBluejay
Webmaster
From: Austin, TX
Registered: 2008-05-26
Posts: 1,173
Website

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Chase Hoffberger's article in the Chronicle this week follows him as he goes car-free for a while.  Here's an excerpt on the bicycling section:

Austin Chronicle wrote:

What I needed was a bike.  That's exactly what I could not get.

Austin provides plenty of ways to rent a bike but only two in which you can pick up a two-wheeler on-demand:  Spokefly, a San Francisco-based company founded last spring by native Austinite Nate McGuire, and B-cycle, the civically run bikeshare program with the baskets and red bicycles you see hitched along the many futuristic vestibules Downtown.

Both companies have found markets around the urban core.  Get outside the city center, though, and you'll find your options lacking:  a few bikes available around UT, East Sixth Street, and Travis Heights, but sincere scarcity elsewhere within the city.  It would have taken me 20 minutes to walk to the nearest Spokefly on the days in which I tried to use the program; for B-cycle, add 10 minutes.

In the sidebar, B-cycle is tagged as having a "Complex pricing structure," the primary reason the reviews are so bad on Yelp.

Hoffberger seems to miss the obvious:  Locals should simply own their own bikes.  It's convenient and cheap.  Also, I don't get what he means by there being only two ways you can pick up a rental bike on demand; lots of shops in Austin rent bikes.

Offline

#17 2015-06-17 16:50:39

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 261

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Not Austin B-Cycle, but an unexpected contribution -- Denver cop uses B-Cycle to chase down fleeing suspect:    http://denver.cbslocal.com/2015/06/17/d … r-bicycle/
update:  http://www.9news.com/story/news/crime/2 … /28867275/

Last edited by Jack (2015-06-18 15:13:28)

Offline

#18 2016-03-14 10:36:08

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 261

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Seattle lawmakers split over whether to buy out ‘insolvent’ bike-share
program for $1.4M
GeekWire  http://www.geekwire.com/2016/seattle-la … gram-1-4m/ 

The fate of Seattle’s bike-share program will be decided later this month. The city’s transportation committee on Tuesday voted 3-3 on
legislation that would direct $1.4 million to buy out Seattle’s bike-share  program. The ordinance will be sent without recommendation to full council for a
final vote on March 14. The existing bike-share program, called Pronto Cycle  Share, launched in October 2014

If approved by full council, the city would spend $1.4 million to purchase Pronto Cycle Share from non-profit Puget Sound Bike Share (which owns it), acquire its assets, and using the remaining $3.6 million to expand the city-owned program over the next few years. The discussion at City Hall on Tuesday centered around who should be responsible for running a bike-share program in Seattle: the city, or a private company. Topics like equity and transportation infrastructure came up throughout the two-hour afternoon meeting.

UPDATE:   http://www.capitolhillseattle.com/2016/ … Seattle%29 

Seattle’s bike share network will come under City of Seattle ownership with an eye on expansion as City Council members voted 7-2 Monday to save the indebted system.

After tacking on amendments to improve bike lane infrastructure downtown and ensure that bike sharing reaches low income neighborhoods, City Council members approved a plan for the City to takeover Pronto with a $1.4 million investment while reserving another $3.6 million for future expansion of the system next year under a new operator contract.

***

By spending $1.4 million, Seattle will immediately acquire 26 stations from Pronto as well as all remaining hard assets. The City already owns 28 stations after purchasing them with a federal grant. The City would also seek out a new operating contract as Pronto’s current contract with the company Motivate ends at the end of 2016. Motivate could still submit a bid to continue running the service.

***
Negotiating new sponsorship deals would be key to expanding and sustaining the system in the future, according SDOT’s head of active transportation Nicole Freedman. SDOT projects it could get roughly $1,200 per new bike in advertising, which would put the system on track to being financially sustainable. Acquiring the system without expanding it would cost the City roughly $110,000 a year after 2016. Re-locating existing stations could also give Pronto a boost after the City takes over, according to SDOT.

***

Last edited by Jack (2016-03-15 16:24:24)

Offline

#19 2017-02-05 13:41:41

MichaelBluejay
Webmaster
From: Austin, TX
Registered: 2008-05-26
Posts: 1,173
Website

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Austin Bcycle has updated its pricing, and it seems to be a big improvement.

First, there's an $80 annual membership, which gets you unlimited 60-minute rides.

The 24-hour pass ($12) and 3-day pass ($15) now get you unlimited 60-minute rides (doubled from only 30).

https://austin.bcycle.com

Offline

#20 2017-02-06 18:24:08

RedFalcon
Member
Registered: 2013-10-10
Posts: 193

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

I don't have much reason to use these here in Austin, but I did use them in Alexandria VA last year while I was on a business trip.  They are a fantastic way to get around inexpensively.   They key thing seems to be to have enough stations with enough bikes around so that you can really get from where you are to where you need to go.  Kind of like the way buses ought to operate.

Offline

#21 2017-06-13 15:46:41

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 261

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Jack wrote:
Jack wrote:

Should be be surprised?  NYC bike share program works safely, contra Puscher's and others' predictions of carnage:  http://davesbikeblog.squarespace.com/bl … -dont.html

And still no fatalities with bike share, apparently.  http://grist.org/list/u-s-bikeshares-ha … aign=daily

That took awhile and very, very many riders:  http://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/12/nyreg … ipad-share

Dan Hanegby of Brooklyn fell under a bus’s tires in Chelsea. He worked for Credit Suisse and was once the top-ranked tennis player in Israel.  Not enough details.  I wonder whether he was avoiding a dooring, but I have no reason to think that is the case (only that it reminds me of a well-known Cambridge door-zone bike lane leading to a fall under a bus some years back).

Offline

#22 2017-07-07 12:23:10

owlman
Member
Registered: 2011-12-16
Posts: 138

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

B-cycle is putting in 3 new stations now and plans to add another 15 over the next year and a half. 
https://communityimpact.com/austin/news … sion-july/

Offline

#23 2018-03-10 22:19:37

MichaelBluejay
Webmaster
From: Austin, TX
Registered: 2008-05-26
Posts: 1,173
Website

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Blurb from the 3/2/18 Chronicle:

Austin Chronicle wrote:

B-cycle's University of Texas bike share program launched recently, providing free memberships for all UT-AUstin students, and half off for faculty and staff; sign up at UTbikeShare.com.  They're also looking for volunteers to help manage the extra load during SXSW.  Earn an annual membership, a free lunch, and a T-shirt.

And they say there's no such thing as a free lunch.

Offline

#24 2019-02-07 21:14:01

MichaelBluejay
Webmaster
From: Austin, TX
Registered: 2008-05-26
Posts: 1,173
Website

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

With dockless bikes and scooters all the rage, can B-Cycle survive?  Does it even need to?  It's a non-profit that wanted to make bikes available.  Well, man, they're certainly available now.  Docked bicycles no longer needed?

Offline

#25 2019-02-14 10:09:50

owlman
Member
Registered: 2011-12-16
Posts: 138

Re: The Austin B-Cycle thread

Per the statesman in November, B-cycle revenue and ridership downtown was down 40% last year.  https://www.statesman.com/news/20181120 … me-to-town


In current news, B-cycle is expanding to the Domain:  https://domain.bcycle.com/  https://communityimpact.com/austin/nort … he-domain/

Note the Domain pricing strategy: a single-trip "$1 to start" ride option like dockless bikes/scooters (+$2 per 30 minutes).  Bcycle Austin still only has a $12 day pass as the cheapest option listed.

Offline

Board footer