Bike share at SFO Airport

San Francisco International Airport announced plans to offer shared bicycles to airport employees for ride around the airport.

The SFO Airport commission says they are taking this step to improve employee wellness, using bicycles provided by Social Bicycles to track Calories burned as employees ride around the 2500 acre airport.

Airport employees who take a safety class and register can use the shared bikes free of charge.

Social Bicycles varies somewhat from the common Velib model. While Social Bicycle operators can designate hubs where bikes can congregate, the locking and tracking hardware and software is all integrated into the bicycle. This allows system users to ride a shared bike to any location — not just to a designated bike share kiosk. A smartphone app shows users the location of the nearest available bicycle.

To encourage bikes are eventually returned to hubs, however, users who release their bike at a non-hub location are charged a fee. That fee is credited to any user who retrieves that bike and returns it to the hub. Social Bicycles proposes that adjusting this fee/credit system for various locations can even encourage crowdsourced rebalancing, in the same way parking and toll lane usage can be adjusted by changing the price throughout the day. With the more traditional bike share programs in Paris, London, Boston and DC, operators use trucks to move bikes around the system throughout the day in order to balance out the demand.

(Because SFO won’t charge employees for use, I don’t know how Social Bicycles plans to implement this particular feature at SFO. Perhaps they’ll require hub returns at the airport?)

More –> Airport World: On your bike! Airport introduced free cycling scheme for staff. Via Steve.


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