Bike share program officially launched in Richmond

Services will be available from Oct. 12 in city centre and Steveston

Bike sharing services will be available in Richmond from Oct. 12, according to an announcement made by U-bicycle last Friday at the Olympic Oval.

MP Alice Wong, MLAs Terresa Wat, John Yap and Linda Reid, Mayor Malcolm Brodie and Couns. Derek Dang, Ken Johnston, Bill McNulty, Linda Mcphail and Chak Au attended the announcement.

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“U-bicycle has all the right ingredients for success. Come Oct. 12 we will have another transportation option that we are excited to use,” said Brodie.

“It just made sense to work with U-bicycle and connect up the Richmond community.”

U-Bicycle
Mayor Malcolm Boride (third from left) and Coun. Ken Johnston (left), Chak Au, Bill McNulty, Linda Mcphail and Derek Dang attended Friday's announcement. Photo submitted

According to the company, 75 bikes and some electronic scooters will be available at 15 bike parking stations this month, primarily in the city centre at the No.3 Road corridor and Steveston.

“This is just our initial installment. Over the next 18 months we will increase the number of bikes in Richmond to 1,500,” said Angel Fu, chief strategy officer for U-bicycle.

She explained that riders will be able to use a designated smartphone app to locate the nearest bike, scan the QR code on the bike and unlock it to start riding.

Unlike some other bike sharing systems, U-bicycle operates without docking stations. Instead, riders must return the bikes and lock them up at a designated “drop zone” to end the trip.

Riders can also lock the bike temporarily between “drop zones,” but they will not be able to end the trip, added Fu.

U-bicycle’s pricing system is simple – each 30-minute U-bicycle trip costs $1, as does each additional 30 minutes. Users can also purchase a 24-hour pass for $14 or a yearly pass for $150.

Fu said those who don’t return the bike after 24 hours might receive warnings or face penalties.

To learn more about the program, check U-Bicycle.ca/.

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