New Blog Series Called “European Vacation – Project Bikeshare” Pulls Out of the Station

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Juliellen is a senior planner with Simple Solutions Planning and Design. She telecommutes and rides her bike from her home in Richmond.
June 20, 2013

Juliellen bikes for transportation and leisure.

Bikeshare programs are fast becoming expected urban amenities in cities around the world – symbols of energetic and thriving urban places that attract smart and creative people.

The use of bikeshare programs by commuters, residents, and workers is well-documented, such as right here on our own site and our close partnership with Capital Bikeshare.

But what about bikeshare as a tourist amenity? Can bikeshare programs actually be promoted to attract tourists to cities, thereby expanding the economic benefits of the programs to cities? What is it like for tourists to use existing bikeshare programs? What are the challenges and what are the advantages? What can cities do to improve the bikeshare experience for tourists as a part of an overall economic development program?

European Vacation – Project Bikeshare aims to answer these questions. This summer, I am visiting – with a friend who is an architect and a fellow cyclist — nine European cities to experience each of their bikeshare systems from a tourist perspective.

We will write about the challenges, including membership process, cost, technology, and language. We will also write about the rewards of seeing these cities by bicycle, which is by far the best way to discover a new place.

The cities we will visit are as follows:

  • UK: London
  • France: Toulouse, Lyon, Dijon, Paris
  • Sweden : Stockholm
  • Estonia : Tallin
  • Finland : Helsinki
  • Russia: St. Petersburg

Some of these cities are still in the development phase of a bikeshare program, and we will discover if the systems are in operation when we get there. If they are not, we will strive to discover a timeline and the cities’ thoughts on bikeshare as a tourist draw.

Stay tuned to Mobility Lab, and please write in with any questions you would like us to ask on our journey. We hope our series will make you feel like you’re getting your own personal tour of Europe … by the seat of a bikeshare bike!

Juliellen heads out on her summer-long ride.


{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Howard Jennings June 20, 2013 at 1:42 PM

Awesome concept, Juliellen! Good luck. We will stay tuned.

avatar Tom Fairchild June 20, 2013 at 3:40 PM

FUN! Let us know how Capital Bikeshare stacks up. Bring us ideas!

avatar Walter June 27, 2013 at 5:00 PM

Of course bike share is a tourist draw. I’m heading to Europe this summer, and I have already checked to see if there is a bike share program in the Cities I am visiting. Bike share is also one of the reasons we return to Montreal for vacations. BTW, I consider myself a “slow” biker … no spandex in my wardrobe.

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