Bike Share Launches In SF: $11.2 Million Project Touted As “Fun Alternative To Driving”

San Francisco and the Bay Area today launched what is being touted as the first public bike share program in California and the first regional program of its kind in the nation.

Top city and transit officials gathered this morning for the first rides using Bay Area Bike Share, a program offering seven-speed bikes for trips in San Francisco, Redwood City, San Jose, Mountain View and Palo Alto.

The rental bikes are available for unlimited 30-minute trips on a $9 daily pass, $22 three-day pass or $88 annual membership. Trips of more than 30 minutes will result in surcharges starting at $4.

The bikes have GPS devices to deter theft and will cost $1,200 to replace if lost by a customer.

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee called the program “an easy, convenient, affordable and healthy transportation option that we’re eager to add to our transportation network.”

Lee joined other officials on an inaugural ride on the bikes from the San Francisco Caltrain station to City Hall this morning.

Amy Worth, chair of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, said Bay Area Bike Share “provides a fun alternative to driving around town” and could expand to other cities in the future.

In the first part of the pilot program, 700 bikes will be available at 70 kiosks around the five cities. In early 2014, 300 more bikes and 30 new kiosks will be added, according to organizers.

The $11.2 million project is a partnership between the MTC, Bay Area Air Quality Management District, San Francisco, Redwood City, San Mateo County, Caltrain, SamTrans and the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regional administrator Jared Blumenfeld said he thinks the bike sharing program will be popular in the Bay Area.

“In a few months, everyone is going to be on one of these,” Blumenfeld said.

He said getting more people on bikes will reduce air pollution as well as congestion on the region’s roadways.
More information about the program can be found online at www.bayareabikeshare.com.

Photo: Rita Hao. Report: Dan McMenamin, Bay City News

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  • dadudedd

    $11.2 million project rolls out 1000 bikes? Wow, nice bikes. No administrative waste in that program. #sarcasm

    • Chachito415

      SFGate is over there, dude. And, yes, with locking stations, GPS, design, good employment, and promotion, I think it’s a great use of funds.

      • Roso

        You would personally buy a bike, somewhere to park it and a way to track it for over 16k? C’mon man. Don’t be intellectually dishonest.

    • sebra leaves

      How will SFMTA recoup the $11.2 Million Dollars? They are handing management of the project over to yet another vendor of questionable integrity… “Bay Area Bike Share will be operated by the same company that oversees New York’s bike-share, (Bike-share vendor coming to S.F. is accused of unfair labor practices.)
      Is this part of the $600 million dollars in bonds they plan to put on the ballot for voters to approve next year? Wouldn’t this 11.2 million be better spent on paying down the $300 million on the Transbay terminal, or the $ ??? overruns on the Central Subway? Or paying for free Muni passes for youth?

      Do we trust these people with our money when they spend it like this?

  • dadudedd

    $11.2 million project rolls out 1000 bikes? Wow, nice bikes. No administrative waste in that program. #sarcasm

    • Chachito415

      SFGate is over there, dude. And, yes, with locking stations, GPS, design, good employment, and promotion, I think it’s a great use of funds.

      • Roso

        You would personally buy a bike, somewhere to park it and a way to track it for over 16k? C’mon man. Don’t be intellectually dishonest.

    • sebra leaves

      How will SFMTA recoup the $11.2 Million Dollars? They are handing management of the project over to yet another vendor of questionable integrity… “Bay Area Bike Share will be operated by the same company that oversees New York’s bike-share, (Bike-share vendor coming to S.F. is accused of unfair labor practices.)
      Is this part of the $600 million dollars in bonds they plan to put on the ballot for voters to approve next year? Wouldn’t this 11.2 million be better spent on paying down the $300 million on the Transbay terminal, or the $ ??? overruns on the Central Subway? Or paying for free Muni passes for youth?

      Do we trust these people with our money when they spend it like this?

  • Chachito415

    Sounds like a cool idea – very successful in NYC. I live in the Castro so I doubt I’ll be using this given its current locations. I hope, I assume, they’ll roll out more useful locations in the Mission, Inner Sunset, etc. There are plenty of apartments in this town where tenants can’t store a bicycle.

  • Chachito415

    Sounds like a cool idea – very successful in NYC. I live in the Castro so I doubt I’ll be using this given its current locations. I hope, I assume, they’ll roll out more useful locations in the Mission, Inner Sunset, etc. There are plenty of apartments in this town where tenants can’t store a bicycle.

  • Jeff

    Wish that Muni could also be touted as a “Fun Alternative to Driving”.

  • Jeff

    Wish that Muni could also be touted as a “Fun Alternative to Driving”.

  • sebra leaves

    If the SFMTA quit diverting $11.2 million dollars away from the Muni to other “fun modes of transit” the Muni would be more reliable and therefore more fun for Muni riders. The diversion of cash from Muni to other capital projects, such as Complete Streets, and cycle lanes, is not being lost on the voters, who will NOT be supporting some politicians the next time they run for office.

  • sebra leaves

    If the SFMTA quit diverting $11.2 million dollars away from the Muni to other “fun modes of transit” the Muni would be more reliable and therefore more fun for Muni riders. The diversion of cash from Muni to other capital projects, such as Complete Streets, and cycle lanes, is not being lost on the voters, who will NOT be supporting some politicians the next time they run for office.

  • jvw

    This is pretty good news for the fit 24-year-olds who live in flat parts of the City and don’t have jobs that require clothes other than bike dress… the other 780,000 of us will just continue to put up with Muni

  • jvw

    This is pretty good news for the fit 24-year-olds who live in flat parts of the City and don’t have jobs that require clothes other than bike dress… the other 780,000 of us will just continue to put up with Muni