Columns
10 years on Image

10 years on

Melbourne Bike Share becomes Docklands Bike Share
Read more >>

Away from the desk Image

Away from the desk

The little bent tree
Read more >>

Chamber update Image

Chamber update

Coming out of COVID-19
Read more >>

Docklander Image

Docklander

Moving across the world for Docklands
Read more >>

Docklands Secrets Image

Docklands Secrets

Conflicting speeds
Read more >>

Chinese

滨海港区 预算菲薄
Read more >>

Critic

A killer in Docklands
Read more >>

Owners' Corporation Management

Performance-based alternative solutions the key to cheaper cladding replacement costs
Read more >>

Fashion Image

Fashion

Top five street style trends
Read more >>

Health and Wellbeing Image

Health and Wellbeing

Warming up before exercise – why you really need to
Read more >>

Letters Image

Letters

What I hate about Docklands
Read more >>

History

(A sailor’s) Home is where the Hearth is
Read more >>

Business Image

Business

Anchor up at Yarra’s Edge’s newest cafe
Read more >>

Owners Corporation Law Image

Owners Corporation Law

Keeping the lights on during COVID-19
Read more >>

Maritime

Two steps forward and one step back
Read more >>

Pets Corner Image

Pets Corner

Ty the adorable rescue
Read more >>

SkyPad Living Image

SkyPad Living

Coming out of COVID-19 with a silver lining
Read more >>

Precinct Perspectives

Getting through COVID-19
Read more >>

State MP

After COVID-19: do we want to go back to “normal”?
Read more >>

Street Art Image

Street Art

Goodbye from Blender Studios
Read more >>

Sustainability

How fast is fast fashion?
Read more >>

The District

Eat your way through our most delicious hot spots
Read more >>

We Live Here Image

We Live Here

Short-stays in the aftermath of COVID-19
Read more >>

Editions
August 09 Edition Cover

Blue bikes scrapped ... what next?

01 Oct 2019

Blue bikes scrapped ... what next? Image

By David Schout

After the state government’s decision to scrap the blue bikes scheme, there will soon be no casual cycling options in Docklands.

Just over a year since share bike company oBike packed its bags, the joint state government and RACV blue bike initiative will be removed on November 30 after it found the bikes were being used on average just once a day.

Roads minister Jaala Pulford said the bikes had “reached the end of their functional life” but their removal would in fact be a positive within the inner city.

“By phasing out the bike share scheme we will create more space on our footpaths for pedestrians and bike parking, which is what regular cyclists and pedestrians tell us is needed in the CBD,” she said.

But the government refused to answer questions posed by Docklands News about the future of share bikes in Melbourne, including whether there were plans for a renewed scheme.

Launched in 2010, the bikes were never truly embraced by Melburnians, for a host of reasons.

Some cited mandatory helmet laws for the low uptake, while the introduction of the free tram zone in 2015 was also said to have contributed to its failure.

The Victorian Greens slammed the decision to remove what it called the “half-cooked” scheme, and said Melbourne was falling behind other cities.

“A successful bike share scheme is an essential element of any world-class city,” transport spokesperson Sam Hibbins said.

“It’s a lazy decision by the government to scrap the Melbourne bike share scheme and it will damage Melbourne’s reputation as one of the world’s most liveable cities.”

“Every other world-class city has a successful bike share scheme, Melbourne should be no different.”

Bicycle Network general manager of public affairs Anthea Hargreaves said the scheme never received the investment needed to succeed.

“A small network of docks and bikes in Melbourne was the number one reason for the failure of the program,” she said.

“The key to a successful bike share scheme is accessibility, location and scale.”

Ms Hargreaves said successful programs in cities such as London, Paris and Barcelona suggest it could work in Melbourne.

“We know that bike share schemes can work, we just have to get it right. As well as the right number of bikes and docks we also need high quality, connected bike lanes and infrastructure.”

The RACV, which operated the scheme on behalf of the government, was disappointed the blue bikes were to be discontinued.

General manager of mobility Elizabeth Kim said they hoped something would fill the void.

“We definitely see a future for bike riding here in the city,” she said. “There’s certainly scope in the future for different combinations of bikes and other ways of getting around.”

The RACV has said once the scheme is discontinued on November 30, it will donate bikes and bike parts to local charities “where possible”.

Share on Facebook

Stay in touch with Docklands. Subscribe to FREE monthly e-Newspaper.

You must be registered with Docklands News to be able to post comments.
To register, please click here.