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Transportation organization says bikeshare use was up 25% last year

Published May 8, 2018
While dockless share bikes account for 44% of the share bikes available, they only account for 4% of the rides.

NEW YORK (BRAIN) — Riders took more than 35 million bike share trips last year — 25 percent more than in the year before, according to a new National Association of City Transportation Officials study.

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NACTO noted that last year, the San Francisco Bay Area relaunched its bike share program with 10 times the number of bikes it previously had; likewise, Honolulu launched a bike share system, Biki, that quickly became the eighth-most heavily used bike share system in the U.S.

The number of bike share equipment providers operating in the U.S. dramatically increased, from three major companies in 2016 to more than 10 in 2017. The volatility of bike share providers has also increased, with at least one major company declaring bankruptcy the same year that it launched in the U.S., NACTO noted.

Dockless bike share entered the market in 2017, and now make up 44 percent of all bike share bikes on the ground in cities, but only 4 percent of all rides.

"Dockless bike share has undoubtedly been the biggest disruptive force in the bike share industry, quickly nearly doubling the bike share footprint (as measured by bikes on the ground) in less than a year. However, dockless bike share systems have not, to date, been heavily used by riders," NACTO stated.

NACTO noted that more cities have worked to make bike share more affordable to a wide cross section of people, and have measurably increased the types of people served by bike share. About a third of station-based bike share systems had an income-based discount program in 2017, compared with 24 percent of systems in 2016.

The report also explores how bike share is used, with differences in time-of-day use patterns between docked and dockless programs.

"In just a few years, bike share has proven successful in an ever-widening collection of cities," said Linda Bailey, NACTO's executive director. "Cities continue to build streets that provide safe places to ride, and people are responding by biking by the millions — to get to work, school, and for personal business. Bike share is increasingly an integral part of the day-to-day transportation mix, and we see no end in sight to this flourishing new mobility option."

For the full report, visit nacto.org/bike-share-statistics-2017.

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