Live data map for the Bike Share Toronto bikeshare system in Toronto, Canada. Click map for interactive version. BIXI is slated to launch in Toronto on May 3 with 1, bikes spread out over 80 stations. While we’re all for. About Bixi: Bixi is a public bicycle rental system that originated in Montreal. It is based on the popular “Velib” bicycle rental system in Paris, France.
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Currently, Toronto Bikeshare consists of a network of approximately 1, bikes and 4, active users, though the system has been plagued by difficulties since its inception in Initially operated by Bixj Bixi service, the system was taken over by Toronto’s Parking Authority after Bixi filed for bankruptcy in Bixi’s financial problems, together with the program’s limited success in Toronto, has curtailed the program’s expansion, leaving the network relatively unchanged since its launch, maap undersized in relation to many other cities.
Compared to Montreal’s 5, bikes and stationsfor example, Toronto’s system of 1, bikes and 80 stations is underdeveloped, especially when our city’s far larger population is taken into account.
Hamilton’s Bikeshare Success Provides Lessons for Toronto | Urban Toronto
In this regard, the system’s forthcoming expansion is especially welcome, given that any bike share system requires reasonably comprehensive coverage in order to become a viable option for commuters. Interactive map of Toronto’s Bike Share network, image courtesy of bikesharetoronto. While an expansion of the system will almost certainly provide crucial benefits, the comparatively small size of Toronto’s network is not the only hurdle that it faces.
Compared to many other cities, Toronto’s bike-sharing infrastructure and technology is relatively inefficient and expensive for both the city and the user, notwithstanding the number of bicycles and stations.
Yet, to find an example of a more successful and popular system, we need not stoke our ‘second-city’ envy by looking to New York or Paris for inspiration. A surprisingly efficient and successful system can be found in a smaller city in our own region; Hamilton, Ontario. Though Hamilton’s SoBi system only launched a few months ago March 20thit already boasts more users 5, active as of early than Toronto’s system, thanks in large part to its greater convenience and ease of use, together with lower maintenance costs, which pass savings along to the consumer.
While Toronto’s system features low-tech bicycles and high-tech parking stations, each of Hamilton’s city bikes has its own GPS tracker and payment interface, meaning that using a bike does not involve paying at a central terminal.
Bike Share Map: Toronto
This seemingly small difference has several important benefits. Firstly, the ” unlock code ” sent to a user’s phone allows for a bike to be quickly rented, avoiding potential lineups at a separate terminal.
Secondly, since each bike features its own GPS system and payment interface, the bicycles can be dropped off and picked up anywhere in the city centre, not just SoBi stations.
This means that parked bikes can be found scattered throughout the city, with the GPS directing each user to the vehicle nearest to them. The location of bikes naturally gravitates to where demand is greatest, while the inbuilt GPS system forms an effective theft-protection measure.
An interactive map of Hamilton’s bike-sharing system, image courtesy of SoBi Hamilton. Though Hamilton’s SoBi system consists of only bikes, compared to Toronto’s 1, the ability to park bikes anywhere makes them more attractive to users, who don’t have to worry about finding a station which there are more of than in Toronto next to every destination.
Likewise, parking anywhere —together with the higher volume of stations —allows the relatively small number of bikes to cover a large area.
Though the two cities are very different in size and transit needs, the success of Hamilton’s SoBi system provides an interesting basis of comparison for Toronto. Standing on the precipice of a major expansion, Toronto Bike Share is set to provide expanded and more comprehensive service to Torontonians.
Yet, beyond the laudable investments in expanded infrastructure, some of the structural advantages of Hamilton’s system provide a possible blueprint for future evolution.
What’s your take on the systems? You can always leave a comment in the space below. Rendering of a Hamilton SoBi station, image courtesy of SoBi Hamilton Though Hamilton’s SoBi system only launched a few months ago March 20thit already boasts more users 5, active as of early than Toronto’s system, thanks in large part to its greater convenience and ease of use, together with lower maintenance costs, which pass savings along to the consumer.
An interactive map of Hamilton’s bike-sharing system, image courtesy of SoBi Hamilton Though Hamilton’s SoBi system consists of only bikes, compared to Toronto’s 1, the ability to park bikes anywhere makes them more attractive to users, who don’t have to worry about finding amp station which there are more of than in Toronto next to every destination. View the discussion thread.
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Toronto Bixi Bike Locations