E Bikes

Topics: Cycling, Sustainable transport, Mode of transport Pages: 6 (574 words) Published: December 30, 2013
New Seamless Mobility Services

Public Bicycles


Poliicy otes
Policy notes
NICHES is a Coordination Action funded
by the European Commission under
the Sixth Framework Programme for R&D,
Priority 6.2 Sustainable Surface Transport

What is it about?
Public Bicycles:

are innovative schemes of rental or free bicycles
in urban areas;

can be used for daily mobility as one-way-use is
possible and they can be seen as part of the public
transport system;

Example: Vélo’v in Lyon
How did the French City of Lyon
encourage thousands of people to

differ from traditional, mostly leisure-oriented bicycle
rental services as they provide fast and easy access;

use the bicycle as urban transport

have diversified in organisational layout, the business
models and the applied technology towards “smart bikes”
(rental process via smart card or mobile phone).

A big part of this success story is

mode within a few months?

due to the introduction of the
Public Bicycle scheme vélo’v.
Each of the 2,000 bicycles available

The transferability of Public Bicycle schemes to cities

at racks throughout the city centre

with appropriate framework conditions for cycling has

is used on average 16 times on a

been proven in many cases (e.g. in France, Germany,

typical summer day. Within the

Scandinavia and Spain).

first six months after its
introduction, 2 Million trips were
made with the Public Bicycles,

Key benefits

replacing around 150,000 car
trips. In combination with the

The implementation of a Public Bicycle scheme...

increased use of private bicycles,

provides a fast, convenient and flexible inner urban
transport option;

can be a “door opener” to increase the acceptance
of cycling as urban transport mode in cities which still lack a good level of bicycle use;

the scheme helped to increase the
bicycle share in the modal split.

also makes sense in cities that have a good level of cycling as it adds a valuable element to existing mobility services;

increases sustainable mobility choices at low cost when
compared to other public transport measures;

The use of bicycles increased by
44% within a year. The service is
a public private partnership
between Grand Lyon and the
billboard company JCDecaux.

encourages intermodal travelling.

Vélo’v scheme in Lyon, France
Photos: Rupprecht Consult

Public Bicycles | page 2

Call a Bike in Cologne, Germany

European countries with Public Bicycle schemes

Photo: Rupprecht Consult

Is this something for us?
In the last years a portfolio of different Public Bicycle
schemes has been developed (see last page “Further
information”), which enables cities interested in their
take-up to choose the right scheme for their needs

“Very quickly, we’ve moved
from being a curiosity to a
genuine new urban transport
mode. We invented the publicindividual transport.”

and targets.
Key conditions for implementation are:

A strong commitment to sustainable urban
transport planning and to the promotion of
cycling as a serious transport mode;

A minimum standard of bicycle infrastructure
for safe and convenient cycling;

Sufficient resources for a large scale scheme
to achieve a real impact;

Gilles Vesco
Vice-président du Grand Lyon,
France, on the vélo’v scheme

Sufficient space for racks/parking to guarantee
the accessibility of bicycles.

Check list
City size

Most suitable for medium to large cities (> 200,000 inhabitants).


Compared to traditional public transport: relatively cost-efficient solution, but (depending on the type of scheme) low to considerable start-up and running cost.
In most cases, financial back up needed to compensate lack of profitability.

Implementation time
Stakeholders involved

Short term (...
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