Thursday, June 11, 2009

Velib Paris changes more than just Paris

The JCDecaux Vélib bike scheme in Paris was responsible for what had almost every Capital in the world contemplating about public bike hire schemes. Since July 2007 Paris was all of a sudden the world capital of rental bikes. Once again the bicycle was in the spotlight as the healthy, zero-emission alternative for the traffic congestion most big cities are struggling with. The first statistics show the success of the Vélib in Paris: every bike is being rented on average ten times a day and around 300,000 people, mainly Parisians, have already taken annual subscriptions. There is more to come as a growing number of cities are setting up self-service rental bike schemes. Chicago is interested, as well as Moscow, Washington, Geneva, Roma, Beijing and Sydney. Read more about the public bicycle in 'Cycling on the rise' by Spicycles. The public bicycle system is also having a huge effect on the sales for bicycles around the world. The offering in bikes is dominated by sports orientated bikes like MTBs and road racers. With the biggest cities in the world implementing rental bike schemes, the demand for City, Trekking and folding bikes is growing and with that also the demand for hassle-free transmission systems. Also the 'standard rental' bikes market is increasing. Read more in Bike Europe.