Greater Greater Washington

Bicycling


Capital Bikeshare comes to the Mall, already

The National Park Service may take ten years to make some decisions, but on bike sharing, they've been lightning fast. Jacques Arsenault noticed that a Capital Bikeshare station is already up on the Mall, on Ohio Drive:


Image by Jacques Arsenault on Twitter.

Just two weeks ago, NCPC approved NPS plans for 5 stations on the Mall, at Smithsonian Metro and near the Washington, Lincoln, Jefferson, and FDR/MLK memorials.

They said the goal was to get one station installed before the cherry blossom festival. Not only did the cherry blossoms come quickly this year thanks to the good weather, but so did the station.

As it turns out, NPS and Capital Bikeshare exceeded that promise: a 2nd station, at the Washington Monument, is also active today.

Twitter user whiteknuckled surmised, "I predict the new Mall bikeshare station will either have zero docks or zero bikes at almost all times for the next few weeks."

It will be very interesting to watch the CaBi dashboard and, once it's available, the trip data to see how this station affects usage. At the NCPC meeting, Harriet Tregoning predicted it will spark a large surge in daily memberships, which are fiscally very healthy for Capital Bikeshare.

In other exciting bicycle infrastructure news, WABA reports that DDOT is installing bike lanes on Columbia Road today.


Image from WABA.
David Alpert is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Greater Greater Washington and Greater Greater Education. He worked as a Product Manager for Google for six years and has lived in the Boston, San Francisco, and New York metro areas in addition to Washington, DC. He loves the area which is, in many ways, greater than those others, and wants to see it become even greater. 

Comments

While not directly "on" the Mall, I was so glad to see the enormous new station at Independence and Maryland directly across from the Air and Space Museum. I've been using it every day and see many folks - both (what look like) professionals and tourists using it. I have a feeling that's going to be a really popular stop - until they break ground on the Frank Gehry Memorial.

by Shipsa01 on Mar 16, 2012 12:55 pm • linkreport

I think that if tourists day- and week memberships make CaBi more profitable and self-sustaining, put plenty on the Mall!

There ought to be, however, some dedicated bike space on the Mall, Constitution, and Independence in order to better facilitate and manage the new influx of bikes (not to mention the existing presence).

by Dave Murphy on Mar 16, 2012 1:44 pm • linkreport

it's not the day memberships -- it is the overtime fees -- that is helping CABI out. Actually putting them on the mall may reduce the overtime fees.

But I'd rather see better usage patterns than profit. Also, a lot of tourists just don't care -- it is a nice way to spend $20 or $30.

by charlie on Mar 16, 2012 1:49 pm • linkreport

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