This is the first major problem I've heard of with the Velib system in Paris. I'm not aware of any similar problems with Tulsa's first-in-the-nation Tulsa Townies, or the new Rack & Roll system. Still, I have to wonder about the long-term viability of a plan that's lost over 25% of their bicycles. They want to expand the system into the suburbs, but if losses are this high, how can they afford replacements?
Thieves ride off with 3,000 of Paris's free bicycles
Thursday, 17 July 2008
The self-service, Parisian bike-for-hire – the vélib' – was intended mostly for short rides when it was introduced 12 months ago, reports The Independent.
More than 3,000 of the sturdy grey bicycles have gone missing since then. Some have turned up as far away as Romania and, according to one report, Australia. Another 3,000 have been deliberately destroyed or damaged. But the 16,000 bikes in circulation have proved extremely popular.