This system for bicycle rental on demand, if a private partner could be found to develop it, could be a practical successor to the ill-fated 'yellow bike' experiment in the reduction of full-sized automobile traffic.
This would be especially popular if 'pedelec' E-bikes (you must start pedalling before the electric motor will assist) were to be offered. Since they already have interfaces for charging, adding a circuit to the meter/reporting system to prevent a successful 'return' of the bike until it's plugged back in would be simple.
Tri-Met transit centers, MAX stops and Park-and-Rides would be naturally successful locations, as would the downtown Portland Transit Mall.
Your comments on the concept would be appreciated.
Sent on 2004-08-13 to:
Secretary of the Board of Directors of Tri-Met
Director of Portland Office of Transportation
Portland office of Flexcar.com
Responses, if any, posted here.