Ten-fold, privately funded expansion for Bay Area Bike Share

The San Francisco Bay Area Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) will consider a proposal to dramatically expand the number of Bay Area Bike Share bikes from the current 700 up to 7,000 bikes, with up to 4,500 bikes for the city of San Francisco, 1000 for San Jose, and 850 bikes in Oakland.

Bay Area Bike Share launch in San Jose CA

Motivate, the company that operates Bay Area Bike Share, would pay for the new bikes and stations. Under their proposal, Motivate plans to divvy these new bikes and stations around the Bay Area in a staged deployment beginning in June, 2016.

  • Berkeley – 400 bikes
  • Emeryville – 100 bikes
  • Oakland – 850 bikes
  • San Francisco – 4500 bikes
  • San Jose – 1000 bikes

Motivate would retain ownership of all bike share bikes and equipment, with sponsorship and advertising rights.

Motivate also agreed to support low-income and limited-English-proficiency membership efforts through pricing and station siting. PG&E’s California Alternate Rates for Energy program will be used to determine low-fee eligibility.

The MTC will consider this agreement at their April 8 Administrative Committee meeting. If this committee approves this agreement, it moves on the full commission for their consideration.

Read the MTC agenda item here [PDF].


  1. This is pretty exciting stuff! Some other interesting tidbits from the MTC agenda item:

    150 bikes aren’t allocated to specific cities yet. Hopefully these will be coming to the Peninsula, which should be low-hanging fruit for cycling in spite of the subpar numbers for the current system. Increasing the system’s density around Palo Alto and Mountain View might be a good start, as could expanding northward from Redwood City to Burlingame (with similar density in the cities between them).

    There’s also an option for municipalities in the nine-county region to buy into the system. Hopefully this will bring the system to areas like Walnut Creek and Fremont, which are starting to build upward but aren’t really thought of as bike-friendly today. Getting people riding without the commitment of buying a bike would go a long way to building support for better infrastructure and safety in these communities.

  2. Thanks for this news. I would think the Santa Clara Caltrain station, with its proximity to Santa Clara University and planned underpass and potential to service the new Earthquakes stadium would be a good candidate for bike share.

    Also it would be nice to see safe bike lockers there, though I’ve been told there are some now(?).

  3. Has anyone studied what the affect would be on Bike Share if the new helmet law passes? It didn’t work out out so well for Melbourne. I think its worth poling the current users to see how many would drop out if the helmet law passes.


    Dallas (of all places) took out their helmet law for adults in preparation for their bike share. California is heading in the opposite direction.


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