Watson’s Turtle Bikes

I ran across this item in the blogsphere (Streetsblog NYC):

Deco Bikes Arrives in Miami: Miami Beach will début South Florida’s first bike-share system — Deco Bikes — tomorrow. Transit Miami reports the system will be launched with 500 bikes at 50 stations and later expanded to 1,000 bikes at 100 stations. Each station will hold 12 bikes and occupy two parking spaces.   

“With the implementation of sharrows  …, upcoming revised bicycle parking standards, and now the implementation of a city-wide bikeshare program, Miami Beach is making big strides to expand bicycle use around the city,” said Garcia. “If successful, other cities in the region like Miami and Coral Gables would be smart to look to Deco Bikes as a partner in creating a regional bike share network.”

Note the opening numbers: 500 bikes, 50 stations. Note that they do not use up piazza or sidewalk space, but replace car parking spaces.

Compare to Ottawa: 100 bikes, 10 stations.

The NCC is working to get bike sharing going. The City of Ottawa is not ready to be involved. Nor was it ready this year to actually implement the five priority links it identified last year. Or even one of them. It is delighted to spend $65 million on the freeway to nowhere — the AVTC.

I suggest we rename Watson’s bike share program  Turtle Bikes because we are so slow to do anything in this study–study–study–pause–study–oops-no-money-left-to-do-anything city. Time to draw back into our shells and hide.

11 thoughts on “Watson’s Turtle Bikes

  1. Too true. I note that Gregor Robertson came into office in Vancouver and immediately planned to build bike lanes. It might have been controversial, and it might cost him at the polls next election, but he took bold steps. Is anyone able to imagine Watson ever taking a bold step?

  2. One hundred bikes at ten stations is a good start. Good for the NCC for not waiting for Ottawa and Gatineau to come on board. For all the bashing they take, and some like Lebreton is deserved, the NCC is an asset here in the capital. I can only imagine what this place would look like if the City of Ottawa had control over NCC lands. Ottawa was way ahead of the curve in embracing the “slow” movement.

  3. Miami has 5 times the population of Ottawa, it makes sense to me that they have 5 times as many bikes and stations.

    1. I recommend Yonah Freemark’s analysis of density of station required:


      “here are two main reasons for this: One, light station density makes short neighborhood commutes via public bicycle more difficult, reducing the chance to attract occasional riders; Two, insufficient density can cause logistical problems in situations where stations either run out of bicycles or, inversely, run out of dock spaces — not infrequent issues, at least considering my own experience using the Parisian system extensively.”

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