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Bicycle sharing research project: Case study

Taito Bicycle Sharing Experiment (Taito-City, Tokyo, Japan)

courtesy of Taito BAD

In Japan, bikeshare programs are "experimented" widespreadly. Cautious bureaucrats do not want to invest in a policy scheme involving some risks of failure. The "experiment" framework provides a convenient excuse in case of failures.
In October 2002, Taito City experimented a community cycle program. This project was funded by the national government's Social Experiment grants. This program used key boxes that can be opened by magnet-striped membership cards in order to prevent thefts. Even though 12 rental locations were provided in an 1 sq. mile area, many users felt more locations are necessary.
However, Japanese do not have technologies suitable for ubiquitous CCS because they have invested too much in the technologies for RCS with massive centralized infrastructures (e.g. technology of mutli-storied automatic bicycle rack like this is awesome). I think European companies with the experience of CCS should come to Japan to sell their technologies.
Web Site (Japanese only)

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