I love being in a city that sets new standards for sustainability, not to mention quality of life: "DC SmartBike" will launch in the coming weeks. Washington is the first North American city to try this type of bike share. This isn't just lip service, I have already spotted stations going in at the busy Foggy Bottom and Gallery Place Metro Stations. I am hoping that the new Washington Nationals Ballpark thinks about signing up for one too!
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
The program is a lot like the car-sharing service in DC, Zipcar. You pay a $40 annual membership fee to access bikes stored at computerized racks around the city. To unlock the bike, you scan an access card. Unlike Zipcar, the bikes can only be used for up to three hours at a time (sad) and can be returned at any SmartBike station (much better than the Zipcar model that requires you to return to Point A after swinging by Point B). In the beginning at least, there won't be any hourly charges. So enjoy it while it lasts!
The DC program is starting small (10 stations/120 bikes) but the program easily could be expanded to more than 1,000 bikes at more than 100 stations within a year.
Check it Out in Business Week: http://www.businessweek.com/ap/financialnews/D90AE1G82.htm