New York City's new bike-share program is so close we can already see the Scandinavian tourists riding through mid-day heat mirages, but the state's first such public bike rental network will be up and running long before ours sees its first flat, on Long Island.
Yes, earlier this month the city council of suburban waterfront town Long Beach has just approved Miami-based DecoBike to launch a 400-bike system that will make its debut this fall. The program comes at no cost to the city—except for a much-fretted-over business losses for local bike shops.
Users will be able to pick up a bike at one of the solar-powered kiosks DecoBike will install throughout the city with only a credit card, and return it to any of the 20-30 kiosks. The company is not only putting $1 million towards the project, but also paying the costs of installing new bike lanes in Long Beach for the next year. The city stands to make about $1 million from the program annually, while DecoBike could see as much as $5 million per year from the new system—which was approved for a five-year contract, with an option to renew after that period.
So, NYC, what are you waiting for? Also, can we get in on those solar-powered kiosks please?