Frequently asked Questions and Answers concerning Bike Sharing


For any US City thinking about exploring public bike share systems, below is great information and one of the best places to start.

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Miami Beach Public Bike Share – More Than Double the Amount of Members Than the Rest of All US Bike Share Systems Combined!

Great Information on Public Bike Share Systems in the United States (Sept 2012):

BiXi Delays Bike Share Deployment – Now New York is Delayed




New York is now delayed. Is it the same software issue as in Chattanooga?

Ok friends and followers of the public bike share blog, what is happening to the core of the BiXi system?

We now see a delay in Chattanooga, I think that BiXi at one time has had a great successful program, but when you change the core technology – well you run into delays!

With 10,000 bike system for New York and 3000 bike system for Chicago pending what does this mean for the rest of the public bike share solutions?

“Jeremy Pomp, general manager of Bike Chattanooga, told The Gazette it’s unclear  when the system will launch.”

Gabe Klein’s intern Jeremy Pomp who was working on the Chicago Bike share system now at (and before) Alta:

Bixi has to change its core technology as they are being sued by 8D technologies the originators of the technology.

Calgary states that there is a conflict of interest:

Please comment if any of this information is incorrect so that it may be changed.

Mandatory Helmet Law and Public Bike Share

This is a great interview discussing the mandatory helmet law in Vancouver and public bike share – it is worth the listen:


Oklahoma City Picks SandVault for Bike Share Solution!

Sustainability: Is Affordable, operates fairly and efficiently, offers a choice of transport mode, and supports a competitive economy, as well as balanced regional development.

SPOKIES – The new Public Bike Share solution for the City of Oklahoma City will launch in the spring of 2012!

With the changing dynamic of Public Bike Share – SPOKIES will use 100 bicycles already purchased for their public bike share solution. Oklahoma City is the only City in North America to use bicycles previously purchased and modified for a public bike share.

Oklahoma City (OKC) will be using the “Deco Bike” ( philosophy for a completely sustainable public bike share solution. By using bikes already purchased, and by hiring a local company “Downtown OKC” to market, and operate the system, it will be Built by locals for locals.

OKC has partnered with SandVault Group to supply the technology for the public bike share pilot. “We partnered with SandVault ( because when we expand the system to hit critical mass we hope to build the rest of the system locally using local manufacturers as well as marketing and operating the system locally.

The fee structure has been approved and has been designed specifically for the OKC market.

Downtown OKC will create an image that fit into the local environment that will be marketable to locals and local businesses making bike sharing a sustainable, alternate mode of transportation in the downtown area.

Deco Bike – The ONLY Experienced Operator in North America Making Public Bike Share Truly Sustainable!

Sustainability: Is Affordable, operates fairly and efficiently, offers a choice of transport mode, and supports a competitive economy, as well as balanced regional development.

Deco Bike has changed the dynamic of Public Bike Share! They are the only large scale Public Bike Share operator to implement a completely sustainable solution. “Every day each DECOBIKE is used on average 5 to 6 times by residents, tourists, and the Beautiful People who flock to Miami Beach, Florida. DECOBIKE is the first privately funded city-wide bike-sharing system in North America. It has completed its first year by logging close to 720,000 rides, with 100,000 in the last 30 days.” – Russell Meddin bike-sharing blog

It is much more than the fact that the program is popular, or that the Public Bike Share system was completely funded privately, Deco Bike took the concept of sustainability and implemented from scratch.

First they pick a partner/supplier (SandVault) that would help with design but allowed a large portion of the system to be built locally, this does not happen with Bcycle or BiXi. “Built by locals for locals” was the first part of the sustainable business solution.

Second is to have the Public Bike Share system operated by locals – this is the second part of the business solution, and continues as Deco Bike expands throughout North America and beyond.

Third was to develop a fee structure that allowed the system to be financially successful, but affordable in the Miami Beach market.

Fourth was to create an image that fit into the local environment that allowed the system to be marketable to locals and local businesses making bike sharing cool and sexy in Miami Beach – another success. “Starting with 550 bikes, there are now 800 bikes in the system. Soon there will 1,000 bikes rolling through the Miami Beach streets and next to the ocean. In its first year, 4% of the City’s residents have subscribed to the long-term membership option. The program is celebrating its anniversary financially in the black.” –Russell Meddin bike-sharing blog

Fifth was to design and assemble a vandal proof bike specifically for the environment that the Public Bike Share solution would be in, this would help with all the first four steps.

This model has not been duplicated by any other operator in North America, of course not every city is the same as Miami Beach, but the idea of having a truly sustainable Public Bike Share solution starts with the proper ideal – this is why there is only one operator in North America that truly has the experience in operating a sustainable Public Bike Share solution.


Derrick Moennick –

Portland to Launch Public Bike Share System in 2013

“The City of Portland is putting the pieces in place for the new bike sharing system they say is coming in spring 2013. On Friday (without any fanfare at all), they launched, which gives us our first look at how PBOT is marketing the program and, more importantly, marks the launch of an interactive station locator tool.”

Make sure to take a look at what Portland has learned from Public Bike Share systems in the US!

People bike more after joining bike share, even if they own a bike. 

Bike sharing makes getting around more convenient for everyone. Two thirds of Minneapolis bike share members reported biking more after joining even though 77% owned a personal bike.

Big systems work, small systems don’t.  

There are hundreds of places in Portland that people want to go to. The more stations you have, the more likely it is that a bike sharing station is near your destination. Too few stations and the system isn’t a practical choice.  DC’s first system had only 10 stations and very little use. DC metro’s new system has 140 stations and had 1 million trips in its first year.

Bike sharing works best in dense places.

Bike share is designed for short trips under three miles and 30 minutes. Cities get the most bang for the buck by locating stations at popular origins and destinations, such as workplaces, schools, and shopping districts. As the system grows, additional areas can be added.

Bike share stations need to be close together.

Whether you’re parking your car or bike or getting off transit, you want to be close to your final destination.  If your bike share station is full, nearby stations provide a convenient back-up option to return a bike.

Theft and vandalism aren’t major concerns. 

Before bike sharing came to the North America, a lot of people worried that the bikes would end up vandalized, stolen or at the bottom of the river. That hasn’t happened.

Today’s bike sharing systems are built to withstand urban conditions – including people with ill intentions. Users must use a credit or debit cards to check out a bike, which creates user accountability. Minneapolis had one bike stolen in 2011. DC/Arlington’s Capital Bike Share theft rate is less than 1%.

US Bike Share Cities

Bike share systems are currently operating in 16 US cities and 14 cities are in the planning stages.

City Bikes Roll out Manufacturer Operator
Arlington 250 2011 Bixi Alta Bicycle Share
Austin 300-500 2013
Baltimore 300 fall 2012 Bcycle
Boston 610 2011 Bixi Alta Bicycle Share
Boulder 200 2011 Bcycle Boulder Bike Sharing
Broward County, FL 200 2011 Bcycle
Chattanooga 300 spring 2012 Bixi Alta Bicycle Share
Chicago (current) 100 2010 Bcycle Bike and Roll
Chicago (future) 3000 2012 Not selected
DC/Arlington 1200 2008/2010 Bixi Alta Bicycle Share
Denver 500 2009 Bcycle Denver Bike Sharing
Des Moines 18 2010 Bcycle Des Moines Bicycle Collective
Fullerton 150 2013? Not selected
Houston 18 2012 (not open) Bcycle
Kailua (Oahu, Hawaii) 12 2011 Bcycle Hawaii Bcycle
Kansas City 200 2012 (not open) Not selected
Louisville 10 2011 Bcycle
Long Beach, CA 160 2012-3 Not selected
Long Beach, NY 400 2012 (not open) SandVault & DecoBikes DecoBikes
Los Angeles ~200 2012-3 Not selected
Madison 350 2011 Bcycle Bcycle
Miami Beach 900 2011 Sandvault & DecoBikes DecoBikes
Minneapolis 600 2009 Bixi Nice Ride
New York City 10,000 2012 (not open) Bixi Alta Bike Share
Oklahoma City 100 2012 SandVault  OKC
Portland Not determined 2013 Not selected
San Antonio 140 2011 Bcycle San Antonio Bcycle
San Francisco 500 summer 2012 Not selected
Sacramento 12 2011 pilot (closed) Midtown Bike Share Sac. Midtown Bus Association…
Santa Monica 250 2016 Not selected
Tulsa 50 2007 Sandvault St Francis Health Systems

16 operating, 14 in planning stages

SandVault’s Answer to Vancouver Bike Share Woes

SandVault is the most flexible bike share solution on the market today! SandVault has worked with Cities, operators, sponsors, health agencies to produce a flexible Public Bike Share solution since 2005 and have adapted the latest technologies to support clients.