Seattle Retries Bike Sharing, But Dockless

Grace Klauser, Editor

For the past couple of weeks, many Seattleites have been able to drive or walk down a local street and encounter a neon green, yellow, or orange bike.

Although Seattle has tried a similar concept of dockless bike sharing before, they are not responsible for the innovation. There are already thousands of bright green, yellow and orange bikes sprinkled around China, where it is a largely reliable source of transportation.

About three and a half years ago, Seattle tried a similar bike sharing program called Pronto; however, it ended in March of this year. Some may say the program was a failure due to the city’s hills and rain, but the of the Seattle Bike Blog, Tom Fucoloro has a different idea.

According to an interview Fucoloro had with PRI, the system was not organized as well as it could have been in order to make it work.

“It was hard to make use of it,” said Fucoloro in the PRI interview. “It was rarely where you were and where you were trying to go.”

The new bike sharing system seems to already be under better control. In the first week, the colorful bikes were reported to have received 15,000 rides, which is already more than double the old systems best week.

About 500 of both Spin Bikes (orange), Limebikes (green) and Ofo Bikes (yellow) were sprinkled around the city, and immediately it took off.

How does it work? The best way to use the bikes is to download an app that a credit card can be connected to. A map shows where all of the available bikes are and a code can be scanned allowing the bike’s back wheel to unlock.

This new system is a great idea for Seattle transportation. If more people began using bike sharing, the transportation issues in the city could greatly decrease.