A Great Big City

NYC Aims to Bring Dockless Bike Share to Outer Boroughs

Bike sharing done right
Bike sharing done right via frozenchipmunk on Flickr

While Citi Bike docks have been popping up across the city, areas outside their 30-minute radius still have no bike share option. The city has announced that they plan to solve the shortage by bringing "dockless" bikes to outer-borough areas.

Although it's in the pre-planning phase in New York, dockless bike sharing systems have popped up from Seattle to Shanghai and have been met with tepid reactions at best.

While the Citi Bike racks caused occasional uproar when they replaced parking places and walking areas, a dockless system opens every square inch of the city to bike parking, leaving proper parking up to the discretion of the last rider.

New York is soliciting proposals from companies with "innovative" solutions for dockless bike sharing that would not impact current Citi Bike coverage, which is mostly in Manhattan, Queens, and Brooklyn. It's a green cab proposal, but one where empty green cabs could park on sidewalks, in front of driveways, and inside buildings.

If New York goes forward with dockless sharing, hopefully a new process can be designed, as dockless trials frequently fail after a few years as eager companies use money from host cities to dump bikes onto the streets which end up as an unused and damaged part of sidewalk scenery.

Read the full proposal here [PDF] and leave a comment below with your solution to bring healthy transportation to neighborhoods outside the Citi Bike radius.

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