Preventing Unauthorized Bike Share Programs from Impacting Quality of Life
Posted by Councilmember Englander on March 23, 2018 at 1:19 PM
This week, the Daily News published an article detailing the recent issue of dockless bike share on the CSUN campus and its impact on the surrounding neighborhoods.
In the last month, CSUN students began using "LimeBikes" which was the result of a contract between the school and the LimeBike tech startup. These dockless bikes are different from other bike share programs in that the user is not expected to pick-up and return the bike to any fixed location. Rather, they can hop on any unused bike, "unlock" the bike through an app, and then leave it at their final destination.
While convenient for users, this system has proven problematic for the wider community which has seen the lime green bikes abandoned on public streets and sidewalks which the City is liable to maintain.. What's more, this program was set-up without consultation of my office. As a result, I've filed a motion that would create a moratorium on any new dockless bike share programs that fail to acquire prior approval from the local council office.
I've since begun conversations with student groups, the university, and LimeBike to see if we can come to an agreement of how the bikes can be used without negatively impacting the broader community. For instance, I've received assurances that use of the Limebikes should be restricted to the CSUN campus and not be left on public streets or sidewalks which is actually stipulated in the original contract. And while we have seen improvements, we are still seeing occasional violations of this rule.
While I am not opposed to these bikes in principle, I am disappointed that we have had to start addressing these issues now when simple communication could have prevented many of the issues we are seeing today. My legislation ensures that this kind of after-the-fact adjustments do not have to happen in the future.
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