The project has been envisaged to have at least 5000 bicycles and 617 parking docks in a year which will turn the project into the largest and densest bike sharing project in the country.
In a major step towards reducing air pollution and promoting healthy lifestyle among the residents, the Chandigarh administration has launched a city wide public bike sharing project. Residents and visitors to the city will be able to take a quick ride from any of the 155 dock stations and park the bicycle back at the nearest dock station post their ride. While for the normal users the cost of renting a bicycle will be Rs 10 per 30 minutes, the regular members of the public bike sharing project would only need to pay Rs 5 for half an hour. The project has the potential of turning out to be a game changer as people would be able to rent a bicycle from any of the city docks and park it back at the nearest dock to their destination, the Indian Express reported.
For now the administration has incorporated as many as 1200 bicycles for the project and these will be parked at different dock stations around the city. Chandigarh UT administrator VP Singh Badnore at the time of the launch of the project said that Chandigarh was the only city to launch such a project on a pan-city basis. Badnore also said that he was proud to inaugurate the pedal-assisted hybrid e-bicycles for the project. The top official of the UT also said that residents of the city should now leave all parking related worries behind and complete their daily chores using these bicycles. The officials Indian Express talked to said that the project has been envisaged to have at least 5000 bicycles and 617 parking docks in a year which will turn the project into the largest and densest bike sharing project in the country.
How will public bike sharing function?
Users will be able to locate the nearest dock station for the smartbike using the SmartBike mobile application. For the members of the project the charges will be Rs 5 per half an hour whereas for ordinary people the charges will be Rs 10 per half an hour. The bicycles are reported to be running on the ‘pedal assist’ system which makes riding bicycles comfortable and user friendly. While the bike does have a motor that gives it a requisite speed, it is excluded from the definition of being a motorised vehicle defined under the Motor Vehicle Act. The bicycle is accessible for people of all age groups and there is no need to possess a driving license to ride the same. The Public Bike service will be fully automatic and users will need to locate the nearest dock through the app, unlock the bike and leave the bike to the nearest dock after their use.
Other facilities of the Public Bike Sharing project
Apart from the mobile bicycle at different dock stations across the city, the project has also provided for the GPS-based tracking of the bicycles, central control system with a call centre, workshop, user registration, and fare collection system through the mobile application. Through the mobile application, the bicycles will be tracked with the help of GPS and after their ride is concluded the users will also be able to pay fare through the mobile application. With the launch of the public bike sharing project, the northern city which also happens to be the joint capital city of Punjab and Haryana has added another feather in its cap.