Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Bixi Toronto Bikes taken over by TPA

The City of Toronto Parking Authority (TPA) will take over the operation of the Bixi Toronto bike share program in the spring of 2014. Transfer of Bixi from PBSC to TPA was funded with a $5 million payment by Bell Media who provides street furniture, ie waste containers along the roads and transit shelters (with advertising). This money will cover transition costs, secure the assets and provide a reserve account for the system going forward. The Authority will also work towards finding a private company to run the bike share program and to find sponsors to help finance the operation.
"We are pleased to announce that the City of Toronto will be keeping the bike share program operating for our customers," said Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong, chair of the City's Public works and Infrastructure Committee. "In less than three years, the bike share program has proven to very successful and has become an important part of Toronto's transportation system with more than 4,400 paid subscribers and more than 1.8 million trips taken during this time. The City's actions will preserve bike share for Toronto, place the system on firm financial footing and provide it with a solid business plan under the management of the Toronto Parking Authority (TPA)."
Additional funding from the City's Pan/Parapan Am Host City Showcase program will allow the expansion of the current 80 bike stations to 102 in 2014.
The media company was allowed to reduce its required automated public toilet installation from 20 to nine, with only two constructed to date. The Star reported that each of the automatic toilets cost $450,000 so the reduction in toilets would be approximately the same amount of the funding for Bixi.
I finally tried renting a Bixi bike and had mixed feelings about the program. They are confusing and I am still unsure what the cost of the days ride will be, mostly because I was lazy and didn't carry a calculator. I rented the bike outside of the Eaton Centre on Yonge Street and drove to the Distillery District where bike rack was full. If the bike rack is full you cannot return your bike to the station - you must look for another one. This means putting your credit card in to get an additional 15 minutes to ride your bike to another location where hopefully space remains to park your bike. Then you need a half hour to walk back to where you wanted to go. Or you could do what I did, keep the bike (you need a bike lock or it will be stolen) and pay the extra charges.
A trio of young men ride the Bixi bikes down Yonge Street in summer

Related Posts by Categories

Widget by Hoctro | Jack Book

No comments:

Doors Open

Scarborough Bluffs





Lake Ontario

Nathan Phillips Square