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    Ken Williams December 1st, 2017
    Bike sharing (scroll down to find)

    The Public Facilities/Transportation subcommittee of the NPPC had thoroughly debated proposed locations for bike-share stations in North Park, so the matter was placed on the consent agenda at the Nov. 22 meeting. But board member Megan Kurcharski pulled Part B of the motion for further debate.
    In a related issue, the NPPC voted to support in concept the use of Lime Bike in the city. The Lime Bike is a dockless bike-share program that targets the first and last mile of transportation. Users can use a smartphone app to find and unlock bikes. The program is already in use in Imperial Beach with plans to expand statewide.
    • CommentAuthorT
    • CommentTimeDec 7th 2017
    No LimeBike for Coronado yet ... Tuesday 12/5/2017 council meeting kicked it down the road

    They voted to postpone a decision, I'd guess 1 year minimum before revisiting but never know.

    Here's the video link - item 10b -

    UC San Diego Bikeshare Program
    UC San Diego is excited to launch a new, campus bikeshare program with Spin, one of North America’s leading stationless bikeshare companies. The preview begins Dec. 8, 2017 with 50 orange Spin bikes in key campus locations. An additional 250 bicycles will be available on campus during the pilot as of the mid-January kick-off event.

    During the pilot, we will track bike use to determine high-concentration and preferred parking areas to identify which campus areas may benefit most from this service. Campus demand and use patterns will determine fleet and program area expansion opportunities.
    • CommentAuthorShady John
    • CommentTimeDec 11th 2017
    I applaud UCSD for trying, but they need to get everyone on the program. I keep seeing cops ticketing cyclists on campus, probably for minor offenses. I've never seen them ticket a motorist. I wrote to various campus officials about this selective enforcement--not sure it will have any effect but I haven't seen the cop out in the morning in the past few weeks, so maybe. You can't put out a bunch of alternative transportation spin and then nail a bunch of poor kids trying to get to an 8 AM class.
    • CommentTimeDec 13th 2017
    I just signed up for UCSD Spin and will give the system a try. In my job I travel across campus a lot and this could be a fantastic opportunity to do so without risking my own bike or having to rely on shuttles or, worse yet, using a car and trying to find parking. I will update here once I have some experience with it.

    DecoBike, LimeBike, Spin pour money into San Diego
    Local lobbyists for sale
    Matt Potter, Dec. 13, 2017
    A battle waged by well-paid lobbyists has broken out at San Diego city hall over whether the city should allow so-called dockless bicycle rental firms to ply their trade on city streets. The city already has a deal with Florida-based DecoBike to occupy streets with self-service bike rental stands bearing garish illuminated billboards, but that approach, the dockless bike providers maintain, is now outmoded. “The two leading companies in the U.S., LimeBike and Spin, launched their services this year and have rapidly expanded in just a few months,” the Union-Tribune reported last week. “They charge $1 for half an hour of use, compared to the $5 per half hour charged by DecoBike.”
    Alvarez told the Union-Tribune last week he had come to be impressed with the new bike rental idea. “Last weekend I saw dockless bikes parked at six different bus stations in National City, which indicated to me people are using those bikes and then jumping on transit. I see this as a very new opportunity that wasn’t on the radar a year ago — or maybe even six months ago. I hope we find a way that this can work in San Diego.”

    Chinese bicycle torture
    The outfit that is seeking “permission to initiate bike sharing within City limits”
    Matt Potter December 27, 2017
    Another San Diego influence-peddler has entered the fray over the controversial case for so-called dockless bike rentals, picking up a Beijing-based client by the name of ofo (lower case intentional). The outfit is seeking “permission to initiate bike sharing within City limits,” per a December 19 disclosure by California Strategies.

    A row of green LimeBikes is seen parked by the Imperial Beach pier, Sept. 12, 2017. Photo by Andrew Bowen

    San Diego City Attorney Memo Opens Door To ‘Dockless’ Bike Sharing
    Andrew Bowen January 24, 2018
    The San Diego City Attorney's office released a memo Wednesday that opens to the door to new, cheaper bike sharing companies operating in city limits.

    "Dockless" bike sharing companies like Limebike and Spin have been trying to get off the ground in cities around the country, offering a cheaper and more convenient alternative to station-based bike sharing companies like Decobike.
    Nicole Capretz, executive director of the nonprofit Climate Action Campaign, said the memo would give San Diegans more options to get around without a car. "We are now going to see an exciting array of options for biking around the city with the potential for door-to-door service, and using electric bikes," she said. "This memo is a game changer."
    Alvarez expressed his excitement with the memo over Twitter, saying "Who's ready for more bikes?!?!"
    • CommentTimeJan 25th 2018
    Well, I have been using the SPIN bikeshare bikes on campus frequently since they started here at UCSD and I love it. To get from A to B on campus quickly there is no better thing.
    I found the app to work just as promised and the process is quick and easy. So far it has been free for me with the introductory discount and a number of credits they gave to early adopters. Find a bike, scan the code, wait a few seconds for the lock to go "beep" and open then ride. At the destination you just close the lock and you're done.
    I like the bikes too. Three speed city movers with a nice front basket, bell, lights and full fenders. The saddle adjusts easily though not quite high enough for my 6'4" but good enough for short rides.
    You're supposed to lock them next to official bike parking which is the only drawback I found. Those official racks are, as so often in this town, located not so much based on the needs of cyclists but more for the convenience of cars and landscape designers. Quite a few buildings here don't have racks or they are located in some obscure spot, out of the way, more like an afterthought. Well, hopefully the program will be successful and there will be enough pressure to build racks where people actually need them. Fingers crossed.

    I, for one, am ready to sign up for the annual plan of unlimited rides for $50. A total bargain IMHO.
    • CommentAuthorfjl307
    • CommentTimeJan 27th 2018
    Old Knotty Buoy:
    A row of green LimeBikes is seen parked by the Imperial Beach pier, Sept. 12, 2017. Photo by Andrew Bowen

    San Diego City Attorney Memo Opens Door To ‘Dockless’ Bike Sharing
    Andrew Bowen January 24, 2018
    The San Diego City Attorney's office released a memo Wednesday that opens to the door to new, cheaper bike sharing companies operating in city limits.

    "Dockless" bike sharing companies like Limebike and Spin have been trying to get off the ground in cities around the country, offering a cheaper and more convenient alternative to station-based bike sharing companies like Decobike.
    Nicole Capretz, executive director of the nonprofit Climate Action Campaign, said the memo would give San Diegans more options to get around without a car. "We are now going to see an exciting array of options for biking around the city with the potential for door-to-door service, and using electric bikes," she said. "This memo is a game changer."
    Alvarez expressed his excitement with the memo over Twitter, saying "Who's ready for more bikes?!?!"

    Good. Start by bringing them to the beach communities.
    • CommentAuthorallanorn
    • CommentTimeJan 27th 2018
    fjl307:Good. Start by bringing them to the beach communities.

    If the beach communities were against DecoBike, wait until dockless bikes hit the ground there.
    City of San Diego


    Discover’s Title Sponsorship of San Diego Bike Share Program Ushers in New Era as Discover Bike
    Partnership Brings Additions and Improvements to the Bike Fleet, Stations and Technology
    San Diego’s bike share program is getting a fresh look and a new name. Discover announced a multiyear agreement that, starting today, will transform the city’s public bike share initiative into Discover Bike, with new branding rolling out over the next few weeks.
    “The actions we take today will make a big difference tomorrow,” said San Diego Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer. “Discover’s support of the San Diego bike share program will enable improvements to the system and allow for its continued expansion. Increasing commuter bicycling opportunities is an important goal of our Climate Action Plan. Also, the concentration of bike share locations in the urban core will play an important part in the Downtown Mobility Plan, which will enhance bicycle safety and increase ridership.”
    Discover’s sponsorship will enable program operator DecoBike to boost the size of the bike share fleet by 20 percent, with additional bikes and stations being added to the city’s downtown and port district areas. Riders will also benefit from investments in new technology, including a new mobile app, an enhanced membership fob, and software updates for more advanced bike and equipment tracking. Discover cardmembers will get 20 percent off the cost of all rentals or memberships when paying with their Discover cards.
    • CommentAuthort.e.d
    • CommentTimeJan 31st 2018
    I wonder if there were any updates to the no-competition clause?
    Re-branding isn't going to solve ridership issues.....

    Just say'n
    • CommentTimeJan 31st 2018
    allanorn:If the beach communities were against DecoBike, wait until dockless bikes hit the ground there.
    It'll be much harder for the NIMBY crowd to defeat a dockless system. And with less (or no) connection to the City of SD than Deco has, they will have much less leverage to get the system blocked.
    • CommentAuthorT
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2018 edited
    Saw some of the new 'Discover' DecoBikes today at the zoo. Appeared to be the same hardware just with new stickers on the bikes...

    I'm glad DecoBike is getting a shot of $ but the user experience and draw of dockless will sink interest in it I fear...


    Photo by Erik Jepsen/UC San Diego Publications

    New bike-share program: bicycle to step in brighter future
    Onset to design environment friendly program, on campus initiative would help to lessen off campus green house gases emission in future.
    Pranjal Mehar - January 25, 2018
    UC San Diego has launched a new bike-share program that could bring change in how faculty, students, and staff wander around campus. This novel initiative is taken by UC San Diego in collaboration with Spin. It is a leading bike-share company that offers a fleet of orange-colored smart-bikes. Each bike is equipped with a GPS tracking device that can be used to locate the bikes and, with the Spin app, unlocked by scanning its QR code.
    Gary C. Matthews Vice Chancellor for Resource Management and Planning said, “The program is designed to offer the campus community an affordable, environmentally friendly and healthy form of personal mobility.” “In addition, the initiative helps bring UC San Diego another step closer to achieving carbon neutrality.”
    Mark Dudzinski, president of the Graduate Student Association told the crowd at the Jan. 18 events, “As I was driving to get here today, looking for parking, I thought of how useful this program will be.” “We are really excited to have this program started so we can help students get from the lab to class and from class to home more easily.”
    Lesly Figueroa, president of the UC San Diego Associated Students said, “We have been talking about getting people moving around campus with all the growth and we think this is a wonderful opportunity to address this issue.”
    During the pilot phase, the campus will track bike usage and preferred parking areas in order to identify which campus locations will benefit the most from the service. According to Curt Lutz, marketing manager for transportation services, campus demand, and use patterns will determine fleet and program area expansion opportunities.
    Lutz said, “Our new construction, including the new Gilman Bridge, will be very bike friendly.” “This is exciting for the thousands of commuters who already bike to campus and for all those who want to find an easy and healthy way to get around.”
    Let's hope Lutz's statement about the new Gilman Bridge is true. From the sources I've come across, the bike lanes seem substandard at 5 feet, no buffer (not even a painted buffer), and a limited sidewalk. The new intersections may be wanting as well. Of course all this was in an earlier rendering and description. The actual facility may in fact work out well. Wait and see…

    The other planned bridge (Voigt Drive bridge upgrade), has plenty of time to incorporate robust, state of the art, bike and pedestrian facilities. We'll see how well that works out with the addition of DAR ramps to/from the freeway below, and the associated additional vehicle traffic volumes.

    See Infrastructure Thread: Nov 3rd, 2017 for more info & images.
    Funny how they didn't mention how the UCSD cops preferentially target cyclists for minor violations, while allowing cars and trucks to park illegally and block bike lanes on campus. I sent a nasty email a few weeks ago and haven't seen the motorcycle cop nailing cyclists since then. Might be a coincidence, or maybe they got the message.

    UC San Diego launches new bike-share program
    February 5th, 2018 San Diego Community News Group -
    Ian Happle, a bicycle enforcement officer at UC San Diego, has been biking to campus for years. Initially commuting from Pacific Beach, Happle now lives in South Park and takes a shuttle to Hillcrest where he bikes to the main campus and often bikes home to South Park at the end of the day.

    “Biking can be a fun and safe way to get around,” Happle said.“We really encourage everyone to wear a helmet. A helmet can reduce the risk of severe head injury if an accident occurs. You ride at your own risk.”
    Shady, maybe Ian Happle got your e-mail. ;-)

    This article seems very similar to the above article by Pranjal Mehar. There are a few new details in it, so I included it here.

    New Bike Sharing Program Launching In San Diego
    Andrew Bowen February 15, 2018
    Bike sharing company LimeBike is launching operations in the city of San Diego on Thursday, promising to offer San Diegans a cheaper and more convenient option to get around the city on two wheels. City spokeswoman Katie Keach said in an email that LimeBike had been granted a business tax certificate, and that the city welcomed more transportation choices that would encourage residents to forgo driving.

    LimeBike said its fleet of bicycles in San Diego would include electric assist bikes, which can help riders climb hills more easily.

    Chinese bike sharing company OFO was banished from the UCSD campus last year for starting operations without the university's permission. UCSD has since started a partnership with rival dockless bike sharing firm Spin.
    • CommentAuthorT
    • CommentTimeFeb 16th 2018 edited
    Ofo launching today as well?? (from that article)

    The bike sharing market is expected to heat up in the coming weeks: Chinese company ofo has also received permission from the city to operate, and a company spokesman said it would be launching on Friday and providing free rides through the end of the month.

    trying the Limebike app yesterday it only showed bikes in national city, none in IB or City of SD. loading the app today, it only showed the Imperial Beach bikes, none in SD or NC. Perhaps issue with the app / user load?
    • CommentAuthorT
    • CommentTimeFeb 16th 2018
    • CommentAuthorbossvoss
    • CommentTimeFeb 16th 2018 edited
    LimeBike Launch Code ($5 credit)

    From the LimeBike blog:
    We couldn’t be happier to serve the fine people of San Diego, so to celebrate we’re offering $5 off of rides on any LimeBike product until the end of the month. Just use code SDLIMEBIKE5 to get riding!
    • CommentAuthorbossvoss
    • CommentTimeFeb 16th 2018 edited
    trying the Limebike app yesterday it only showed bikes in national city, none in IB or City of SD. loading the app today, it only showed the Imperial Beach bikes, none in SD or NC. Perhaps issue with the app / user load?

    There are a ton of bikes in downtown SD around the County Admin Bldg / Waterfront park. They were apparently distributed Wednesday night.
    • CommentAuthorallanorn
    • CommentTimeFeb 16th 2018
    This evening I saw LimeBike and ofo bikes in Little Italy.
    I didn't know where to post this. The Bike Share Thread seemed as good a place as any. There's more in this short article, its worth a read.

    Bird scooters are the new thing to ride in Pacific Beach. Photo by Thomas Melville

    Beachgoers flock to the new trend: Bird scooters
    Dave Schwab February 16, 2018
    Heard of car share and bike share? Now there’s scooter share in Pacific Beach. Black-hued “Bird” Segway Kickscooter ES1 Electric Scooters, retailing for $399, are seemingly everywhere these days along the beachfront. The 30- to 40-pound dockless electric scooters, capable of speeds up to 15 mph, are available through a scooter-share service via a smartphone app.
    In Pacific Beach and elsewhere along the San Diego coast, the new transportation mode played to mostly mixed reviews.
    But Sara Berns, executive director of Discover PB, the community’s business improvement district, views Birds differently.

    “Bird scooters could be a unique opportunity to offer an alternative transportation model, and last-mile commutes that align with our eco-district principles, while mitigating some of Pacific Beach’s parking and traffic issues,” said Sara Berns, executive director of Discover PB, the community’s business improvement district.

    “However, we want to ensure that the company and its ridership are adhering to public safety concerns, and that of our merchants. We have reached out to work with the company to help alleviate some of those issues to ensure they are not impeding on our existing business community, but rather enhancing it,” she said. “We look forward to them working with us and the community at- large.”


    Abandoned Scooters: Rented scooters causing problems in Pacific Beach
    February 07, 2018
    SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) – A scooter company called Bird is ruffling a few feathers in Pacific Beach. The scooter company is being accused of allowing customers to leave their scooters pretty much wherever they want instead of having designated parking for its rentals.

    Kit Kantner owns the building that somehow became the Bird’s favorite nest. “It’s unacceptable. Yesterday, I actually talked to a technician that was here repairing one. I asked him to have his owner remove them from my property. I come back this morning and there were seven,” he said.
    • CommentAuthorT
    • CommentTimeFeb 17th 2018
    SanDiegoVille also had a good 'how to' step by step page for the Bird scooters as well:
    • CommentTimeFeb 21st 2018 edited
    Limebike has only been operational in SD for a week or two. Yet, I saw a "homeless conversion" of one of the LB bikes today: I am surprised that the bikes can be "hacked into" with such apparent ease.

    T:.. 'how to' step by step page for the Bird scooters as well:
    Wouldn't it be better if the directions simply said "avoid riding on sidewalks",


    Mobike's silver and orange bikes.

    Three new bike share businesses roll into San Diego
    February 23, 2018
    LimeBike brought out its bright green bicycles on Feb. 16, making it the first dock-free bike share business to launch in the City. Soon after, ofo planned to began deploying its yellow bikes to share. And on Feb. 23, Mobike rolls out its signature silver and orange dock-less bikes to locations in San Diego.
    San Diego becomes Mobike’s fifth U.S. market, and adds to the company’s global expansion into more than 200 cities and 12 countries in less than two years. One of Mobike’s core principles is responsible operating, meaning the quantity and location of bikes are exclusively based on supply and demand. This tactic maximizes impact while reducing congestion, ensuring bikes are where the community needs them, when they need them.
    To find out more about the new bike sharing businesses, visit,, and

    Bike Sharing Company Mobike Launching Services in San Diego
    Debbie L. Sklar February 23, 2018
    Councilman David Alvarez, who rides his bike to and from work, said the introduction of multiple bike share options “is a game changer” because biking as a mode of transportation is now more viable for more residents. “That’s not an option that’s as readily available to people as it should be,” Alvarez said. “That’s about to change.”

    More bikes on the street means fewer cars, which is a boon for residents, the environment and the City’s Climate Action Plan, which calls for an increase in bicycling as transportation, Alvarez said.

    ofo’s dockless bike sharing coming to San Diego
    February 15, 2018
    Having just received our business license to operate in San Diego, ofo will begin deploying bikes throughout the city, giving residents and visitors greater mobility with our next-generation station-free bike sharing. To celebrate our entrance into San Diego, ofo will offer free rides through the end of February!
    • CommentAuthorT
    • CommentTimeFeb 24th 2018
    Going to north park today for a haircut, I didn't really appreciate how ubiquitous the limebike / ofos were until i saw in person. easily 6-8 of each brand's bikes on every street corner. wild stuff. i'm sure the inventory will level out in the next month ...
    I want to make art out of the bikes. They're fucking everywhere and a nuisance.
    • CommentTimeFeb 26th 2018
    JayOtheMountains:They're fucking everywhere and a nuisance.
    More of a nuisance than the gazillions of cars strewn about anywhere and everywhere you look?
    • CommentTimeFeb 26th 2018
    Lime Bike also has e-Bikes. That could make a real difference as an alternative to autos for people not accustomed to hills.
    • CommentAuthorallanorn
    • CommentTimeFeb 27th 2018
    bikingbill:Lime Bike also has e-Bikes. That could make a real difference as an alternative to autos for people not accustomed to hills.

    Rode one of their e-bikes on Saturday and a scooter yesterday. Really useful as they’re electric assist to 12mph and made an uphill ride home very manageable. The scooters are a blast.
    • CommentAuthorRohler
    • CommentTimeFeb 27th 2018

    LimeBike and Ofo bicycles outside the county administration building in downtown San Diego. Photo by Chris Jennewein

    ‘Dockless’ Bicycles Pop Up Downtown, Offering Transportation Flexibility
    Chris Jennewein on March 3, 2018
    “Dockless” rental bicycles have popped up throughout downtown San Diego in the past two weeks, promising low-cost transportation flexibility. LimeBike, Ofo and Mobike began offering services following a memo issued by the City Attorney’s office on Jan. 24 that concluded an earlier agreement with Deco Bike did not prohibit other providers. Adding to the profusion is Bird, which rents electric scooters.

    The new services use a smartphone app to locate and unlock an available bicycle or scooter. Rates are approximately $1 per ride, with discounts for students. When a ride is finished, the bike or scooter can be parked wherever convenient and legal.
    • CommentAuthorT
    • CommentTimeMar 4th 2018
    SDUT has pretty much the same article but with more quote of people complaining that 'no one told ME this was coming!!!'

    Armadas of bright bikes pop up all over San Diego, attracting fans, detractors
    David Garrick March 2nd, 2018
    San Diego’s streets and sidewalks are suddenly replete with colorful bikes and scooters as multiple operators battle for a leg up in the latest transportation trend of app-rented bikes that can be ridden on sight and left anywhere.

    But merchant groups and community leaders are complaining they got no notice the flood of bikes and scooters was coming, and some residents are frustrated about clogged sidewalks and bikes being left in inappropriate places.
    San Diego is latest battleground in global war to control 'dockless' bike rental market
    Joshua Emerson Smith March 5th, 2018
    One of the most recent trends in disruptive technology is the rather abrupt appearance across American cities of thousands of freestanding bikes for rent through the use of smart phone apps — from Seattle to Los Angeles to Washington D.C. and now San Diego. In recent months, the fledgling industry’s top companies — rolling in hundreds of millions of dollars of venture capital — have cruised into downtown San Diego to battle for the attention and brand loyalty of urban residents on the go.

    These bike-sharing companies have lots of challenges, including cycle-cluttered sidewalks, constant maintenance, vandalism, and the need to fetch bikes abandoned in far-flung areas. Still, the mobility option seems the flavor of the month, with hundreds of locals and tourists spinning around city streets on the candy-colored bicycles from Ocean Beach to National City all the way down to Imperial Beach. “When consumers see the bikes and see that they’re ubiquitous, it changes user behavior,” said Anna Wan, general manager of Ofo in San Diego. “At the end of the day, the most important thing is that you as a consumer when you walk outside, you see the bike that you want to ride,” she added. “If you have to walk a few blocks to find your bikes, you probably won’t ride it.”
    Larry Nora, recently traveled to Beijing for work, so he said he’s familiar with the dockless bike-rental model — including one of its biggest pitfalls. “They’re just scattered all over the streets,” he said. “You can’t even walk on the sidewalks. You’re just walking over bikes. So I think there’s a point where you have to draw the line.” It likely won’t get that bad here in the states, although residents all over the city have complained about errant bikes. “We find quite a few stacked up together and not necessarily standing either,” said Denny Knox, executive director of the Ocean Beach MainStreet Association. “They look like they’re getting vandalized too.”
    "With an open market, you have more bikes," said LimeBike General Manager Zack Bartlett. “The flip side of that is you have operators who aren't as responsible and place a lot of bikes in order to get rides.” Bartlett said clogging sidewalks and having bikes strewn everywhere is not good for the industry, but that LimeBike is committed to being courteous. Evidence of that is Imperial Beach agreeing last week to renew LimeBike’s contract for another six months, he said.
    Jason Wong, U.S. general manager for Mobike, said his company intends to be one of the survivors. "We are careful about the markets we choose and we're excited to be here for the long term," he said, praising the San Diego market for its mild weather and strong customer base from tourists. Wong said in other markets where there has been fierce competition, the winners have typically been the companies with the highest quality bikes, apps and data systems.

    Each company claims to be better than competitors in those areas. LimeBike, the only company operating in San Diego willing to provide ridership numbers, said there have been more than 30,000 total rides since Feb. 15.
    The volume of bikes and their sudden appearance has prompted some complaints. Leaders of the Gaslamp Quarter Association described themselves as “caught off guard” in a recent web post, adding that they’ve since tried to “communicate our neighborhood’s unique challenges to each of the new operators.”

    The Mission Hills Business Improvement District told members in a post that “we were as surprised as you were!” They said merchants are concerned about the bikes impeding pedestrian traffic, falling over too easily and blocking customers trying to exit vehicles.
    The proliferation of bikes and scooters has also stirred controversy on social media community pages, with some residents expressing support and enthusiasm while others complain. Examples include recent comments on NextDoor.

    “Something like LimeBike would be great if I want to go somewhere a couple miles away but don’t want to worry about locking up a bike that’ll eventually be stolen anyway,” said Mike Rodgers of the ballpark district.

    But Edward Wisnewski of Little Italy was less enthusiastic. “These bikes and scooters have just added to dodging,” he said. “I constantly am dodging other bikes and skateboards.”
    Is Southern California's 'dockless' electric scooter fad a public safety hazard?
    Joshua Emerson Smith March 6th, 2018 (Good informative video in story)
    As Southern California continues to embrace ‘dockless’ bike sharing, a new player in the app-based mobility market has picked up considerable momentum — electric scooters. These motorized scooters have created a challenge for local authorities as riders of all ages from beach communities to urban centers have in recent weeks and months been riding illegally on sidewalks and without helmets.

    Like dockless rental bikes, users can unlock the scooters using a smart phone and then drop them anywhere. The business comes in contrast to the docked model, where users must pick up and return bikes to a fixed station. While the city has plans to dramatically expand bike lanes in downtown, the vision has yet to be realized.

    Residents have now started to express frustration at the potentially dangerous situation as motorized scooters join the thousands of freestanding rental bikes strewn about the city.
    Most recently, the city of San Diego seems to have been caught flatfooted enforcing state laws on the increasingly popular motorized scooters. While the police department has said it’s cracking down on such illegal behavior, riders from downtown to Pacific Beach can be found on any given day careening on and off busy sidewalks, most often without helmets. Riding in traffic can feel “unsafe,” said Tony Cai, 23, who was running errands on an electric scooter in downtown San Diego on Monday. “It depends on if there’s a designated bike lane. If it’s not really clear, I’d rather ride a little bit slower on the sidewalks.”
    “I’m a fan of the bicycles, but these people on the scooters are an accident waiting to happen,” said Dave Gapp, 62, who said he and his wife almost crashed into three people zipping down the sidewalk on scooters in front of Petco Park. “We were afraid we were going to be hit,” he added. “If a 200-pound person going even 10 MPH runs into someone that’s going to cause considerable damage.”
    In response to questions about public safety, Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s office provided few details on what if anything the city plans to do to address the situation. “People should follow the laws and take appropriate safety precautions,” Greg Block, senior press secretary for Faulconer, said in an email.

    The Santa Monica-based company Bird pioneered the electric scooter business model in Southern California, launching in September to much fanfare and quickly expanding to Venice and now San Diego. Bay Area startup LimeBike took notice and recently launched its own electric scooter option, currently available only in San Diego. “We’ve been blown away by the number of rides we’ve gotten in the first few weeks,” Zack Bartlett, general manager in San Diego for LimeBike, said of the electric scooters.

    Bird has had something of a bumpy start, with the city of Santa Monica cracking down on the local startup last month following a number of accidents, including a severe head injury and a broken arm. “Ideally we want to educate people,” said Kenneth Baer, spokesperson for Bird. “But we can’t monitor everything people do once they get a Bird.”
    To that end, the Santa Monica police department started aggressively ticketing those riding on the sidewalk, said city spokeswoman Constance Farrell. “We’ve seen a lot of behavior that’s very unsafe, and so they are in fact enforcing rules through citations,” she said. “Our biggest concern is that a lot of young people, children, preteens, see these as toys.”
    The San Diego Police Department said it has been enforcing the laws around motorized scooters but would not provide statistics on the number of citations it’s issued in the last year to people illegally riding bicycles or scooters on the side walk. “We are aware of the safety issues they are causing and have been enforcing the laws related to these,” police spokesman Billy Hernandez said in an email.
    In Pacific Beach — where Bird first launched in San Diego — tensions over the electric scooters have been running high. While numerous people could be seen riding the scooters up and down Garnet Avenue this week, Sara Berns, executive director at Discover Pacific Beach, said that police officers have recently started citing people for riding on the sidewalk. “I think partly people don’t know the rules,” she said. “We hear all the time that people don’t know they’re not allowed to be on the sidewalk.” Electric scooter and dockless bike sharing companies typically carry liability insurance and often have contracts that indemnify local governments from legal responsibility in case of accidents.
    • CommentTimeMar 7th 2018
    Comparatively, I'd bet the scooter drivers are incurring fewer injuries than automobile drivers over the same distances. Much less the CO2 emitted.

    You have to love these sort of "no context" studies.
    Bike-sharing backlash: La Jolla groups lament pop-up vehicle rentals, want meetings with City, Ofo, Lime and Bird reps
    Ashley Mackin-Solomon March 7, 2018
    When it comes to bike-sharing in La Jolla, it’s damned if you dock and damned if you don’t.

    Because they do not have stations at which they are parked, some members of the La Jolla Parks & Beaches advisory group and the La Jolla Village Merchants Association lament the “littering” of these bikes in parks and on sidewalks. These boards previously disapproved of the City of San Diego bike-sharing program, DecoBike, because it had docking stations that would have taken up street parking and sidewalk space. However, the City withdrew its proposal to bring DecoBike kiosks to La Jolla.
    When it comes to parking the LimeBikes, the company suggests leaving them by the sidewalk pavement, not on grass. It also advises against placing the bikes on the ground. Ofo similarly recommends parking “anywhere outside of the pedestrian right-of-way that complies with local laws and does not obstruct traffic. You can park at any public bicycle rack.”
    However, La Jolla Village Merchants Association executive director Sheila Fortune said the issue has been a “major topic” at the San Diego Business Improvement District (BID) Council, mainly because none of the BID representatives knew anything about these ride-shares before they started popping up.

    “These programs were blessed by the City Attorney’s office without presenting to local groups,” she said. “These companies are not paying rent, they are taking business away from companies that are paying rent. They are not contributing to the community. They leave their inventory on our sidewalks. They’re parked anywhere and everywhere.”
    At the Feb. 26 La Jolla Parks & Beaches meeting, members decided to request a presentation from representatives who could explain the programs and the approval processes that transpired to allow them to operate in the City. Trustee Bill Robbins said he wasn’t against the bikes, but the cluttering of sidewalks. As an example, he cited Coast Boulevard South, where the sidewalk was recently expanded and repaved.

    “An awful lot of people walk that way, using walkers, rollers, strollers and wheelchairs. I don’t want bikes on that sidewalk,” he said. “I’d like to write a letter to the Parks Department and the Mayor’s office, but also ask the companies, or the City, to make a presentation so we better understand what is going on. We don’t need to come up with the ultimate solution, but we need to get on board and let people know we are concerned about this.”

    Agreeing, Sally Miller pleaded that the bikes not be left in La Jolla and questioned why these companies are allowed to operate without community input.

    “They did not get our permission to come in and invade our town. If we let any company, any vendor, come in, it will open up Pandora’s Box to letting more vendors come and litter our sidewalks. I’m also adamant about protecting businesses that pay rent, pay taxes and are losing business. That was one of the reasons we didn’t want DecoBike, they took money away from local businesses.”
    At a press conference after the meeting, San Diego Bike Coalition Executive Director Andy Hanshaw said a presentation has not come to La Jolla because “there are a staggering number of community groups in San Diego and we are still planning on presenting to them.”

    Hanshaw said what makes LimeBike and Ofo different from Discover (Deco) Bike, is the absence of kiosks and being tied to GPS tracking, which can provide more data for the City’s Climate Action Plan. “The GPS tracking will help us determine where people are riding, and where we need bike lanes or more bike infrastructure,” he said. “We’ve found when you provide bikes at an affordable price and bike infrastructure, people will ride. Now we have more riders, which is what we wanted, we will continue to advocate for building infrastructure sooner — that is a key piece to all of this.”
    • CommentAuthort.e.d
    • CommentTimeMar 8th 2018
    Thinking about a boycott of Little Italy if they get the city to ban dockless bikes. Yeah?

    Will bike and scooter shares overpopulate La Jolla?

    Dave Schwab March 10, 2018
    But, with several new app-based dock-free bike share programs, could this sudden propagation present a new DecoBike situation? In Pacific Beach and elsewhere along the San Diego coast, the new mode of transportation played to mostly mixed reviews.

    “Bird scooters could be a unique opportunity to offer an alternative transportation model, and last-mile commutes that align with our eco-district principles while mitigating some of Pacific Beach’s parking and traffic issues,” said Sara Berns, executive director of Discover PB, the community’s business improvement district. “However, we want to ensure that the company and its ridership are adhering to public safety concerns, and that of our merchants.” “We have reached out to work with the company to help alleviate some of those issues to ensure they are not impeding on our existing business community, but rather enhancing it,” she said. “We look forward to them working with us and the community at- large.”

    Dan Michaels, a Pacific Beach business owner, turned his thumbs down on the new alternative ride share service. “These new electric scooters for rent all over PB are getting annoying,” said Michaels on the Next Door social media site. “They are leaving them everywhere and [they’re] allowed to operate without a business license. Riders are intoxicated renting them, underage, and don't obey any laws of the road. Then when finished, they are leaving them in front of doors, ramps, etc.”
    Despite not being on the agenda for the Feb. 26 meeting of La Jolla Parks and Beaches, Inc., community park planners resoundingly said “no” to dock-free scooters.

    “How do we stop this invasion of our sidewalks?,” asked Sally Miller of LJPB, whose mission is to preserve, protect and enhance La Jolla parks and beaches. “If we don’t stop this now, we’ll be invaded by every [other] vendor while we’re trying to protect our parks, beaches, sidewalks, and streets. They [riders] can’t just invade us without our permission.”
    “This isn’t just about bikes, but about every single vendor who thinks they have the right to throw whatever they want at us on our sidewalks,” concluded Miller. “They didn’t get our permission to come in and raid our town. If we just let any company come in, it will open up a Pandora’s Box, and we’ll have all vendors covering all of our sidewalks.”

    A LimeBike and Ofo bike with damaged front tires at Sunset Cliffs on Ladera Street on Sunday. Photo by Thomas Melville

    Ocean Beach wants more regulations for dockless vehicles
    Dave Schwab March 11, 2018
    With dockless bikes of every color and style – along with motorized scooters – seemingly everywhere all at once, the Ocean Beach Planning Board invited representatives from the companies to its March 7, 2018 meeting to answer questions about the businesses – as communities try to find a solution to regulate the vehicles.

    Carl Hansen spoke for the black-hued electric, stand-up Bird scooters, which are increasingly dominating the coastal landscape. Hansen said Bird and competitors are offering something new and different. “We want to provide as many options to gas-guzzling, carbon-generating cars as possible that are dockless and easily accessible,” said Hansen. “We need to make sure these new transportation choices are convenient, while being thoughtful about how we interact with the communities.”

    Anna Wan Christie, of the yellow Ofo bikes, billed as the world’s original and largest station-free bike-sharing platform, which is in more than 20 countries, talked about bikeshare’s purpose. “We want to provide that first- and last-mile transportation for people to get them out of their cars for the good of the environment,” said Wan Christie. “We want to be good neighbors with everybody.”
    Both dockless reps responded to criticism their products are strewn helter-skelter making them eyesores and safety hazards. The reps claimed their bikes are picked up each evening after-hours, stored centrally off-street, then redistributed early the next day.
    “You [bike share operators] don’t pay taxes like brick-and-mortar businesses that you’re coming in and competing with, crushing them and putting them out of business,” Aguirre said. “We need our small businesses." “We don’t need corporate bike-share coming in here fleecing our community. You’re trying to take over the whole market. That’s not the way it should be. I hope someone stops you vultures.” “It costs a lot to buy and maintain bikes. These dockless rentals are undercutting guys like myself,” said a traditional beach bike shop owner from the audience.

    Board member Craig Klein didn’t see how the dockless business model can be sustainable. “This tech stuff, $1 an hour … It just doesn’t seem like your investors are going to get their money back,” Klein said. Klein also asked why dockless providers weren’t concerned about their bikes being stolen – or scavenged in coastal communities where bike theft is rampant. Wan Christie, of Ofo, said theft of GPS-tracked bikes hasn’t thus far been an issue.

    Mobikes, LimeBikes, and ofo bikes parked along Broadway Street in San Diego on March 1. (Union-Tribune file photo by Eduardo Contreras)

    Bike-sharing idea spreading to coastal North County
    Phil Diehl March 11, 2018
    Dockless bike sharing, the novel idea that rolled out with a rough start in San Diego in February, could spread to North County coastal communities as soon as this summer. Led by Encinitas, the proposed one-year pilot program may also include Del Mar, Solana Beach, Carlsbad, Oceanside, Camp Pendleton Marine Corps Base, and North County Transit District.
    Bike sharing is seen as a way to get more cars off the road, reduce pollution and greenhouse gases, and encourage more people to get out of their vehicles and exercise. “One of the things we are trying to solve is that first-last mile in transit,” said Crystal Najera, an Encinitas climate plan administrator leading the group project. Studies show more people would use public transit if there was an easy, inexpensive way to travel the final short distance from a train station, for example, to a workplace or other destination.
    Three companies began offering dockless bike-sharing operations last month in San Diego. But the sudden appearance of so many rental bikes, including the recent addition of electric-powered bikes and scooters, has led to problems. The most frequent complaint seems to be about parked bikes blocking busy sidewalks. Other issues include people riding illegally on the sidewalks, vandalism, abandoned bicycles and people riding without helmets.

    Some San Diego merchants, frustrated by the sudden abundance of app-rented bikes, have asked the city to set new limits on them, but so far it’s unclear how that might work. North County can avoid some of those problems by making an exclusive deal with a single vendor, Najera said. Using a single company across all the coastal region also has the advantage of making it easier for people to rent and return bikes anywhere within the cities.
    As with any new business, there are kinks to be worked out, experts say. But participation is high, and the business appears to have a big future. As a result of that optimistic outlook, entrepreneurs with deep pockets are willing to drop huge sums of money into bike-sharing startups.
    Dockless bikes rent for $1 to $2 an hour in San Diego, an artificially low price set to build a market for the brand. “It’s very cheap, but it’s questionable whether (the price) is sustainable,” said Howard LaGrange, an avid cyclist and Oceanside’s bicycle and pedestrian coordinator.

    Oceanside’s City Council is scheduled to hear a report on the regional proposal April 11 and decide whether to participate. “I’ve been pretty supportive,” LaGrange said Wednesday. “The concern is the placement of bikes in the community … and whether they are bunched up and impeding people on the sidewalks.” Overall bike-sharing appears to be a good program, LaGrange said, and one that’s evolving rapidly as it adapts to the available technology and the way people use it.
    Del Mar’s City Council voted unanimously on Monday to join the cities exploring the idea. Encinitas and Solana Beach are both scheduled to hear reports and consider their participation later this month. Del Mar Councilman Dave Druker advised caution, saying the cities should be sure that the chosen vendor is prepared to be in business for “the long term” and not just until the investors’ money is gone. “It looks like we are going to have to put a little time and effort into this just to get it off the ground,” Druker said.

    Other council members said they see advantages, especially for tourism, which is a significant contributor to the local economy. “As a resident, I’m excited about this because it means when people come visit me they have another way to get around town,” said Del Mar Councilwoman Ellie Haviland.
    Dockless bikes and hepatitis
    They put them in the furniture zone
    Dryw Keltz, March 13, 2018
    The primary complaint seemed to be that there were no clear guidelines as to where the bikes should be left when a rider had completed his or her trip. A couple of those in attendance seemed unhappy with the image of the scattered bikes on the sidewalks, when compared with the uniform appearance of the Discover bikes which are locked in specific docking stations. Locally, ofo bikes are on the streets 24-7. Unless they are broken, they are in circulation. Ofo claims that their bikes are meant to be kept in the “furniture zone” on sidewalks—if you are scratching your head (as I was) the furniture zone is the area of a sidewalk in which you generally see landscaping, light poles or benches.
    So, if you combine Bird and LimeBike’s reported units (2500) and then go with a low-ball estimate for how many additional bikes ofo and (not present at the meeting) Mobike are responsible for (say 1500 combined) that’s an additional 4000 bikes and scooters on our sidewalk “furniture zones,” 3500 of which remain there 24/7. As a result, issues such as business owners dealing with bikes blocking their entranceways are sure to pop up. “Your bikes just line up in the back of our kitchen door,” one frustrated business-owner explained to the LimeBike representative. “So we called your company to kindly ask you to relocate them, and they were like ‘There’s nothing we can do.’”

    "Same thing has happened downtown in businesses for over 20 years. I remember when the pedicabs first started. Everyone saturated. Everyone ran out and bought a pedicab and eventually the city had to go back in and get the licenses out and educate the people…the drivers and so forth. This is going to be one of those situations.”
    It was an East Village meeting, so the issue of the homeless and their access to the bikes was to be expected. An attendee asked how often the bikes were washed after he claimed that he saw a homeless person near Horton Plaza go to the bathroom on one of the bikes earlier in the day. Heavy use and contact with the bikes by the area homeless population is sure to make some potential riders uneasy after the recent Hepatitis A outbreak.

    Keeping the bikes sanitary, and also available for all the citizens to use, will likely be a tricky balancing act in San Diego. Easy access to these bikes is obviously a positive move by the city in an attempt to motivate citizens to use alternative modes of transportation.
    • CommentTimeMar 13th 2018 edited
    Oh f-it. Lets just have people drive and park cars. So much better than dockless bikes and scooters.

    • CommentAuthorShady John
    • CommentTimeMar 13th 2018
    You should see the debates about the dockless bikes, and especially the Bird electric scooters, on NextDoor here in SD (specifically PB/MB/LJ). Some of the points are valid, but the sense of entitlement that the drivers of cars feel is incredible. Actually, the sense of entitlement with respect to just about everything is incredible, but that's a topic for another forum.