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Bicycle sharing research project: Case study

Nerima Town Cycle (Nerima-City, Tokyo, Japan)

by Masa Matsuura

In 1992, Nerima City, one of the 23 special districts of the Metropolitan Tokyo area, introduced a rental cycle system (RCS) as one of its public transit services for commuters. Currently, Nerima Urban Development Public Co. operates the Town Cycle prorgam at 7 rental locations with more than 2,000 bicycles.
This project is widely considered as one of the early pionnering efforts in Japan. The expertise gained through this project is handed over to the current public entrepreneurs elsewhere, by the individuals who worked hard to make this project succeed.
For instance, the pioneers learned that the local bicycle dealers and workshops must be involved in the development of bikeshare program in order to avoid oppositions against the program for fear of losing its customer base. The program itself is not profitable by its own. Its deficit is covered by the surpuls from bicycle parking fees (in Japan, parking bicycle nearby train stations costs a few bucks).
Web Site (Japanese only)

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