Town Square

Post a New Topic

Will bike-sharing work on the Peninsula?

Original post made on Sep 16, 2013

Getting around on the crowded streets of downtown Redwood City could be easier and less stressful with the recent launch of Bay Area Bike Share. The pilot program, set to run over the next year or two, will test the popularity and practicality of some 700 green and blue rental bikes installed along the Peninsula.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, September 16, 2013, 7:54 AM

Comments (8)

Like this comment
Posted by resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 16, 2013 at 10:29 am

Really disappointing that Menlo Park is not participating in this program. This would be a great way for MP residents to visit Redwood City or Palo Alto.

Like this comment
Posted by resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 16, 2013 at 10:32 am

This is also a great way to bring more customers to Menlo Park's shopping districts. Many local people no longer go downtown because parking is so terrible.

Like this comment
Posted by Be Real
a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Sep 16, 2013 at 1:04 pm

Can you imagine the fight over where to place the bikes? If you think Stanford project is complicated...Good Grief.

Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 16, 2013 at 1:17 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Undoubtedly Save Menlo would object on the grounds that this would increase traffic.

Like this comment
Posted by Michael G. Stogner
a resident of another community
on Sep 16, 2013 at 1:32 pm

No Helmets are offered, I don't know if that is a good or bad thing.

Like this comment
Posted by Scott McMahon
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Sep 16, 2013 at 1:44 pm

I worry that this limited roll out of the bikeshare program is too small to be a real test of the concept, and it will fail due to lack of use. It's one of those things that don't get practical until it reaches a certain coverage level.

My wife and I visited Washington DC recently and used the bikeshare bikes there. It was a terrific way to get around the city. But bikestations are pretty much everywhere there.

For those who haven't experienced bikeshare, you need to know that it's absolutely not a bike rental system. It's more like a public transit system that uses bikes. When you take a bike from the bike station, you need to ride it directly to another bike station and drop it off. If you try to make any stops or significant detours along the way, you will rack up time charges that grow more punitive as your time with the bike increases. If there is no bike station near your destination, you really don't want to use bikeshare. Unfortunately, the current deployment on the peninsula has very few bikestations. They are almost all very close to Caltrain; mostly within walking distance of the train station and of each other. To me, it doesn't make much sense to use them. The only exceptions that I see are the bike stations at Stanford. Those look like practical locations that will work for students and people who work there.

I'm especially disappointed in the coverage in San Francisco. I would go there and use the bikeshare, but coverage is so limited. Basically, it only works for the Financial District, China Town, and a section of the Embarcadero, (but not all the way to Fisherman's Wharf.) Bikeshare won't get you to Golden Gate Park, the Mission District, SoMa, the Zoo, Northbeach, Ocean Beach, etc, etc.

I hope the system gets more coverage soon. Until it expands, I worry that it won't get enough use to justify it's cost.

Like this comment
Posted by Be Real
a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Sep 16, 2013 at 5:48 pm

Wasn't the getting about town the purpose of muni busses? Or are we too sophisticated for public transit?

Like this comment
Posted by resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 16, 2013 at 7:05 pm

Public transit works well for many people. Caltrain, for example, is extremely crowded during rush hour. However, bike share has a lot of advantages for shorter local transportation. Bikes are available 24 hours a day and you don't have to wait an hour for the next scheduled bus or train. Bike share can complement public transportation, eg stationing bikes at train stations so they can take you the last few miles to destinations with no public transit service and are too far to walk.

Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.


Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields

Fu Lam Mum shutters temporarily in Mountain View
By Elena Kadvany | 5 comments | 2,898 views

How Does Silicon Valley’s Culture Affect Your Marriage?
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 524 views


Readers' Choice ballot is here

It’s time to decide what local business is worthy of the title “Almanac Readers' Choice” — and you get to decide! Cast your ballot online. Voting ends May 29th. Stay tuned for the results in the July 19th issue of The Almanac.