Bikeshare Goes Live Today!

Photo by PoPville flickr user kevnkovl

A couple of weeks ago we talked about Capital Bikeshare but today (and this weekend) you can see the stations all over town. Even though I saw a map, I was still surprised about how many stations I passed on my walkabout. I was particularly happy to see one nearly outside the Red Derby at 14th at Spring St, NW. You can learn all about the program and sign up here.

Right near Red Derby

Bike across the street from Petworth metro by Sweet Mango

38 Comment

  • They are all girl bikes

  • Dumb question – how is this different from the bikeshares we’ve had for the past year or so, i.e. the one outside the Reeves Center?

  • I hate to be a jerk, but this program is a complete rip off. Have you seen the prices they charge?

    $12 an hour, $70 for the day. I rented a car the other day. It was $26 for 24 hours. These bike prices are just silly.

    It reminds me of my friends who pay obscene sums for used furniture on Craigslist. I kind of feel like D.C. kids don’t have any comprehension of how much things are supposed to cost.

    • I see $1.50 for an hour?
      Yeah, a day it’s a rip-off but it’s not meant for the day, especially with that price I don’t think anyone would be taking it out for a full day. It’s more of a bike up in one place, ride, drop off. Of course, it’s much cheaper to buy a bike…

    • How do you get $12 an hour? Looks like only $10.50 for 2 hours on that website. Maybe $15.50/2 hours if you include a one day membership fee.

    • The pricing is set up to prevent you from keeping the bike all day. You get on the bike, ride to your destination, and return it so someone else can use it. Then, when you want to go home, you get another bike and reverse the trip.

      This is a point to point transportation system.

    • Yeah, seems pretty steep if you need the bike for more than an hour or so.

      But I’m assuming they’ve researched their business models and have determined that short-term bike rentals are what they want to go for. If you’re just trying to zip across town, then this could be a decent deal if your alternatives are taking the bus or taking the metro.

  • @Ryan

    That’s not what it looks like to me…seems like it’s $50 a year membership and up to 30 minutes free, 1.50 after that…things don’t get steep until you’ve had the bike out for a long time…and if you sign up on the spot for the day, it’s $5. Seems pretty reasonable if you just use them for short trips around the city and return them to a rack- they aren’t for hardcore cyclists who ride for hours for fun.

    I might sign up- I’m not a great bike-rider, so I don’t want to invest in a bike yet, but I could use this to go to/from work for a while until I decided a bike is worth the investment. $50 for a bike to use when I want that I don’t have to store or maintain? Makes sense.

  • No locations downtown. No free first 30 minutes like Velib.


  • FD- reading comprehension fail. There will be tons of locations downtown. They just haven’t installed them yet (rolling out 5 more locations per day). There are 50 stations so far, and 110 total. They’re only showing the ones that are operational as of today, not future stations.

    First 30 minutes IS free. And you can drop off and pick up a new one every 30 minutes.

    Why do have to be so cynical and negative?

  • Looks like a pretty bad business model. I foresee a dwindling trust fund in the near future.

  • Whose trust fund, Jason? DDOT’s?

  • Huh? Trust fund? What on earth does that mean? Have you even read about this business model? Or have any clue what a success it is in other cities? It’s not operating on anyone’s trust fund, jackass.

  • Wow. Are there anti-bike share trolls on here today. POP readers are not usually so monumentally incapable of reading or understanding a concept.

    Commenter FAIL.

  • Check out this free iPhone app: iFindBikes.
    It allows you to quickly find Capital Bikeshare bikes in DC and Arlington.

  • Man you guys have no idea of the history of bikes. Women’s bikes were designed as one reader put it as “step through” when traditionally women wore dresses! That was the reason for the difference! Gesh!

    I guess some of of you don’t know why there is a side saddle for a horse either.

  • This is going to be one of the best things that has happened to DC. I’m really happy about this and I’m one of the first members.

  • Ha! I just saw the first 30 minutes is free ONLY if you pay a $5 “day membership”.

    How exactly is paying $5 free? Crazy business model.

    • The scenario you describe implies that one would sign up for a day membership each time one uses the system. That is indeed crazy, but not as a business model but rather as a consumption model. Once one is a member, the first 30 minutes of each use of service is free. And if you read more closely (, the day membership is one of three membership options. As with most subscription pricing models, the unit (in this case, daily) price goes down as the subscription length increases. The pricing structure is thus designed to encourage annual membership and frequent short trips.

  • This is a great idea. I’m going to sign up.

  • Snarkers, please take a breath and try to comprehend this. Bikeshare system for short trips. 50 bucks a year membership, first 30 mins free per ride, $1.50 for the next 30 mins, it escalates after that because they don’t want you keeping it out all day. Think of it as urban transport, get on, get off.

    It will be the largest system of its kind in the country, and is in the league (though not necessarily the size) of systems in many other big cities around the world. It is truly a step toward world-class. DC is on the progressive edge here.

    And since the bikes are designed for a slow, upright, civil ride, if you’re not inclined to weave in traffic a helmet is not really needed, in my opinion. Esp. with all the new bike lanes and the fact that many neighborhood sidewalks are fine for riding if you’re slow and careful. But thank god they ‘encourage’ rather than enforce helmets, leaving the choice to you.

    See Danish or Dutch bike culture for a point of reference, the most advanced bike cultures on the planet. Yes they have a much more segregated bike infrastructure (away from cars). But virtually no one wears a helmet, and they don’t ride like kamikazes either. All in all a very elegant urban solution, and one we should be grateful for a chance to emulate even on a smaller scale.

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