Open Thread: The Race for the First Bike-Share in L.A. County
There’s been a slow war between three Los Angeles County cities to see who would be the first to have an official, large-scale bike-share system. Sorry, Beverly Hills, your 50 bike system doesn’t count.
This week Santa Monica, Long Beach and Los Angeles all had some news on the bike-share front. It appears that Santa Monica is now in the pedaler’s saddle. According to Assemblymember Richard Bloom, who wrote in Santa Monica Next’s comments section, CycleHop could have bikes on the ground within weeks.
Meanwhile, Long Beach was staking claim to first-in-the-county status, but just announced this week that its contract with NextBike had fallen through and it was also moving forward with CycleHop. CycleHop will be working with a local operator and needs to sign a contract with said operator soon.
Last, Streetsblog Los Angeles unearthed a contract for a thousand-bike bike-share system to come to the City of Los Angeles via Metro (LACMTA) in early 2016. This being Los Angeles County, the city/Metro contract will of course have a different technology than the ones in Santa Monica and Long Beach, raising some disgruntled murmurings from civic leaders in Santa Monica.
Many people that read this site are in California cities that already have bike-share. So, help us out! What should the three L.A. County cities be looking for as they bring their systems online? What should residents and other bike-share users expect during those first weeks? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.