Shiny Red Bikes are for Sharing!
Clear Channel Outdoor…will launch the country’s first bike-share service in Washington, D.C., in mid-May in partnership with the district’s Department of Transportation. SmartBike DC will initially offer annual subscribers access to 100 bikes at 10 stations in the city’s central business district. Other cities, including San Francisco and Chicago, are eager to follow suit.
Bike sharing has apparently taken off in a big way in Paris, so maybe the trend will catch on in the US as well.
The cool thing about bike sharing vs. car sharing is that where with car sharing you typically rent a car from a particular location and have to return it to that exact location you can usually just hop on a bike, ride it to your destination and return the bike to a location near there, so you’re not stuck renting a bike all day just to use it to commute.
As an interesting side note, Clear Channel also owns the bus shelters here in Pittsburgh (as opposed to the Port Authority actually owning them), so the company seems to have a big interest in transit, even when the local population doesn’t.