- In 2016, the city of Baltimore partnered with Bewegen Technologies to launch North America’s largest electrical-assisted cycling (or pedelec) bike sharing program. The system is located in Baltimore’s metropolitan area with over 25 stations available. Fast forward one-year later, this grand “sharing economy” experiment in America’s most dangerous city has imploded due to what the company’s CEO says is a level of theft he has never experienced before.
As of today, Baltimore officials have suspended all operations of the bike fleet until October 15, 2017. According to the Baltimore Sun, the temporary shutdown is due to “thieves ripping the bicycles out at an unprecedented pace”, said Alain Ayotte, CEO of Bewegen Technologies, the Canadian manufacturer. The manufacturer of the $2.36 million Baltimore Bike Share system said his company has “never experienced the level of theft” that caused officials to announce a temporary shutdown of the program to allow additional locking devices to be installed to the bike docks.
We’re seeing less bikes in docks and more Divvy vans picking up damaged bikes at locking stations. We’re also seeing Rahm continue with the Bike Lane spending spree (over $100,000 per mile?) Is Chicago making any sort of money on this? Is any reporter looking into this or are they just waiting by the phone for the next hit piece authored by City Hall?