You may be surprised to hear that California, one of the most eco-conscious states in the US, doesnâ€™t have a single large bike-sharing program. Thatâ€™s about to change, with at least five opening in major California cities over the next year.
Bike-sharing programs are usually made up of automated stations placed at relatively close intervals within a city, offering users day passes, annual memberships, and other options to rent out a bike for a period of time and drop it off at any other location. Itâ€™s not exactly a way to travel right across a big city, but in congested areas of Los Angeles, it should be great if you want to go pick up lunch without worrying about parking or getting caught in a mess of traffic.
London, Paris, and Barcelona have been on the bike-sharing trend for quite some time, and U.S. cities such as New York, Boston, D.C., and Denver have also caught on. Over the next year, California will have bike sharing available in Santa Monica, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Long Beach, Anaheim, and a few other spots along the Caltrain corridor.
If it catches on like it has in other cities (and no doubt it will if Millenials have anything to do with it), this could be an easy way to help cut down on the horrific Los Angeles traffic and smog. It may also keep drivers from selling their first born just to find a decent parking space near the dentistâ€™s office.
Is bike-sharing offered in your city? Have you tried it yet?
Image CC licensed by Mark Hogan: DC bike sharing station