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Should cities have bike share?
Dockless, station-free (app-based) bike share systems (e.g.
) are better than docked, station-based ones (e.g
BikeShare stations services often need to pick up bikes from one location and bring them to other locations, when certain stations fill up, e.g. when events are happening or when people all commute in one direction.
On average, walking distance to a bike, will be shorter with station-less services.
Having to leave the bike at a station to end your ride, most of the time means that you will have to walk for a couple of minutes to go to your final destination, thus station-based services are less convenient.
BikeShare stations are an extra expense for services, a cost that they will pass on to the consumer.
Cities need to invest upfront solely in the bicycles, rather than both the bicycles and expensive stations/docks. Alternatively, many providers pay for the bicycles, leaving cities with little upfront investment.
Dockless systems allow flexibility for large events (e.g. moving lots of bikes near a stadium before a sporting event)
People will not have issues returning bikes (e.g. no full docks)
Dockless/station-free systems leave sidewalks and other rights of way cluttered
Docked stations gives certainty to users that bike stations are close.
Services that have BikeShare stations have fewer of their bikes stolen.
Having a docked/station-based system allows urban planners and city government to better plan and organize their transportation system
Extra walking on the beginning/end of a trip may have health benefits
These systems are run by companies who may not share use data with government agencies who need it for planning