Los Angeles hopes for gridlock relief as bike-share scheme hits the streets
This week, Los Angeles became the latest city to add a bike-share function to its streets. Following on from Dublin, London, Boston and New York, a fleet of 300 cyclists (including Mayor Eric Garcetti) rode out on the new bicycles.
There will be 65 stations spread out around downtown LA, and around 1000 bikes available for the public to use. It's a refreshing development in a city known primarily for gridlock and having many, many cars on the road.
The programme is currently open only to monthly and year-round pass holders, but will be available to walk-up cyclists until from 1 August. For $20 per month, riders can use the bike for free during the first 30 minutes, with every half hour afterwards costing $1.75 - but if you check the bike back at a station before that thirty minutes is up, you can check it back out again for another free half hour. The year-round pass is $40,and when it launches, the walk-up cost will be $3.50 for 30 minutes.
The bike racks are in popular spots around downtown, including Little Tokyo, Chinatown, the Los Angeles Convention Center and the Fashion District. The stations will also be centred around public transport hubs like Union Station and prominent bus stops. In the future, officials hope to extend the programme to districts including Pasadena, North Hollywood, Burbank and more.