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Paris Bike Sharing program in Trouble or is it?

This article from the BBC, depicts how vandalism and theft are threatening this premiere bike sharing program, Velib, in Paris.
hn-velib-2

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over 15,000 of the original fleet of bikes have disappeared.
Here’s a video of some of the bikes in action…

Perhaps the hype is being over inflated by the one company who sponsors the program, JCDecaux, the advertising firm.
Streetsblog has more on this.

2 comments to Paris Bike Sharing program in Trouble or is it?

  • Slappy

    Nothing like a couple of idiots to wreck things for the masses.

  • Reports of Velib being unsustainable and close to fold are wildly exaggerated. The information and analysis in the BBC story came apparently unfiltered, via a story in Le Parisien, from JCDecaux officials.

    JCD has been engaged in protracted negotiations with the City of Paris over the details of maintenance and operation standards, profit-sharing and penalties, and the extension of the contract to neighboring suburbs. It is widely believed that JCD representatives used hyperboles about the sustainability of the existing business model and contract, in the hope to strengthen their position at the negotiating table.

    In fact, Velib’s running costs are only a bit higher than initially expected, due to unexpected levels of theft and vandalism, but the viability of the hugely popular and successful program has never been under threat. The only question is who will pay for the (very manageable) extra cost. JCD or the City?

    The JCD management itself has been taken off guard by the worldwide echos of the story. They have moved to redress the course and issued comments in Le Monde playing down the impact of theft and vandalism on their operations (link below, in French).

    “Vandalisme sur le parc de Vélib’ : JCDecaux dédramatise”
    http://www.lemonde.fr/web/imprimer_element/0,40-0@2-3238,50-1154410,0.html