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Maciamo
10-02-09, 20:45
Paris won't be a green city any time soon.

18 months ago, the advertising company JCDecaux launched a public bicycle system in the French capital. Similar schemes had been running in Vienna, Lyon, Brussels, Cordoba or Melbourne. But the company has announced that it was forced to stop operating the bicycle rental service after nearly half of the 20,000 bicycle were stolen and 11,6000 were vandalised.

The introduction of public bicycle aimed at reducing the use of car on short distances in order to make the city greener. Users were encourage to use the bikes for less than 1 hour (the price jumped from 1 to 4 euro/hour after the first hour) and could return it to any station in the capital once they were done. The scheme had been greeted with enthusiasm, with 42 million rentals since July 2007, i.e. over 30,000 rentals per day in average.

10 other French cities are now using the shared bicycle system. So far Paris is the first city that has to give up the system. In comparison, the more bicycle-friendly Austrian capital has entered its 7th year of service, with no significant problem.

More details here :

BBC News : Thefts puncture Paris bike scheme (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7881079.stm)

Miss Marple's nephew
22-04-09, 09:51
In Copenhagen there’s been a “freebike” system going on for many years.

You put a coin into the slot (exactly like shopping trollies) and when (and where) you leave the bike, you get your coin back again. It is now ready for the next person to use it.

Maciamo
22-04-09, 12:26
In Copenhagen there’s been a “freebike” system going on for many years.

You put a coin into the slot (exactly like shopping trollies) and when (and where) you leave the bike, you get your coin back again. It is now ready for the next person to use it.

Great ! That's basically the same system but in free ! That's to be expected of Scandinavia. :-)

Marianne
28-04-09, 12:20
I wish it was like that in Athens too. Although there are quite a few cities in Greece that have a very well organized system for biking, the Mayor of Athens just recently announced that the first bike roads are going to be created soon... Athens is an old city and in the past it was built very unorganized. The parking problem is huge down town and there is barely room for pedestrians to walk (due to parked cars on the pavements) so making room for special lanes for bikers is hard... Im glad i live in the suburbs of Athens where there is plenty of space to bike, but still there are no specially designed lanes for bikers. People still have to bike side by side with the cars or on big pavements..

Miss Marple's nephew
29-04-09, 10:57
..... Athens is an old city and in the past it was built very unorganized. ..
It's a pity but it's the unorganized cities that are the most interesting.

Organized cities are ONE BIG TOWN whereas unorganized cites are like many small towns with their own individual character.

Marianne
29-04-09, 13:02
Yes that's true. Athens is a beautifull city (although I prefer Paris :P ) especially in the very center close to the Acropolis, where there are old buildings maintained and no cars are allowed, but in general its not the best city for people that want to use bicycles.
Drivers are careless (like in every mediterranean country from what i know :P ), bike lanes do not exist (bikers usually use the special bus lanes), and pavements are either 30cm wide, or are huge but full with illegally parked cars that leave almost zero free space even for pedestrians...
Although I think that this situation exists mostly because bicycles are not popular in Greece for adults. People see them as toys for kids or think that only athletes use them. It is very uncommon for people to use them as a car replacement to go to work with and that's sad cause the weather in Greece is excellent for biking most of the year.
Only recently people started changing their opinion about bikes, hence the Mayor's desicion to create bike lanes in the center of Athens

Miss Marple's nephew
29-04-09, 14:48
Yes, I agree.

I live in Malmö where we’ve got bicycle paths going almost everywhere and if a motorist doesn’t respect the bicylist it’s usually a “non-Swede”. I’m a bicyclist too, so I appreciate it.

But I also agree about Paris. It’s the perfect example of what I said about many towns within a city. Each arrondissementhas its own character and its own charm.

TheCaptain
29-04-09, 17:42
And I live in Copenhagen, which calls itself "the world's bike capital". That is with good reason, as we have excellent bicycle infrastructure (only Amsterdam is comparable with Copenhagen).

Just take a look here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_8dGodhGtI
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OYajXN4pPHI

And it is a good idea indeed. All our bike paths make people healthier, less obese, the air is cleaner, it reduces carbon emission, less car traffic, fewer parking problems etc... :)

Miss Marple's nephew
30-04-09, 10:03
Before the Öresund bridge was built I used to take the ferry between the two cities and I had two bicycles; one here at home and another one that I kept in Copenhagen, near Pilen terminal in Nyhavn.
http://motorbicycling.com/images/smilies/bicycle.gif

Marianne
30-04-09, 10:25
You guys are lucky. In Greece most cities/towns except for Athens have bike lanes, but i live in Athens... :(
Another problem with Athens is that the biggest part of the city is not flat like Copenhagen for example. It's built on hills and that makes it difficult for most people to start using their bikes for distances longer than 2-4km, to go to work for example. People are not motivated to start bicycling because of that, but i hope that now with the new bike lanes people will use their bicycles more
It is estimated i think that in Athens there are about 4.000 adults (every kid has one to play with) using their bike daily and the total population is more than 4.000.000... At least this is not the case for other Greek cities where 30% or more of the people are using their bicycles daily.

Miss Marple's nephew
04-05-09, 09:20
You guys are lucky. In Greece most cities/towns except for Athens have bike lanes, but i live in Athens... ..... problem with Athens is that the biggest part of the city is not flat ..... It's built on hills ...
Yes. That's the reason why bicycling is so popular in Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Malmö. It's eeeeasy.
http://www.thesaucyvegan.com/images/smilies/More%20Smilies/0028Bicycle.gif