Posts Tagged ‘gobike’

Ford’s Bike “Share” System has been Heavily Subsidized, by Ford Marketing and Taxpayers – Yet FordGoBike is Very Unpopular on Yelp These Days – Why’s That?

Tuesday, April 10th, 2018

There are a lot of reasons why People Hate Us On Yelp, lately. Feel free to see why, on Yelp.

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Hey, which costs more, a heavy clunky slow FordGoBike or an electrified JUMP bike? At $1200 (plus an “admin fee”), a Ford GoBike costs more. How can this be?

IDK.

Anyway, maybe the Ford ppl will have better luck over the next 30 days. We’ll see.

In the meantime, the dockless and/or electrified and/or scooterly competition will continue to eat Ford’s lunch…

FordGoBike in the Presidio vs. an Electric JUMP! Bike in the Presidio: One Makes Sense, But the Other is a Mystery – Is GoBike Failing?

Thursday, March 8th, 2018

Have you seen all the bright neon (orange? red?) JUMP! bikes all over Frisco these days? That’s not surprising since they’re getting used, a lot. A lot more than the clunky, heavy, legacy GoBike “bikeshare” bikes from Ford Motor Company in what’s basically a continuation of Bay Area Bike Share what got started like a half-decade ago and what’s cost us eight figures already.

I’ll tell you, my guess is that most of the FordGoBikes I’ve seen in the Presidio and points north, sometimes way north, like out of the county north, and we’re talking about a lot, like hundreds I myself have seen these past nine months, are being pushed / pedaled by PEOPLE WHO DON’T KNOW THAT THEIR $10 “DAY PASS” isn’t actually a day-pass and that they’ll soon be met with an unexpected high two-figure or low three-figure bill from the Ford ppl.

How do I know this? Well, I go up and ask them about it.

Of course, some know that they’ll get hit with hours and hours of penalty fees – and they just don’t care. The deal’s worth it for them. Well, that’s fine with me, be my guest.

But this?

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These ppl near the Great San Francisco Bight, let’s call it the Baker Beach area, have a loooooong way to go to get their heavy rides back into even the nearest GoBike rental station.

But look at this, unexpected JUMP bikes up at the Sports Basement. So this makes sense – two ppl pay two dollars to trek from where, SoMA, the Financh, the Twitterloin? All of those places are within range I figure, what with pedal assist and all. Then they’ll pay another two bucks to get home? If so, that makes sense to me as well:

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Now, do I approve of JUMP’s video/photo policy what allows Social Bicycles Inc or whomever to use images of you* and your face, (your pretty face!) however the Hell they feel, with no payment to you? Well Hell no. But that’s the deal our local alphabet soup (SFMTA SFCTA MTC BAAQMD it doesn’t matter) struck. Sorry.

OTOH, people are loving the JUMPs.

And hey, speaking about the alphabet soup, are all those govt ppl pleased with how FordGoBike is doing these days? Oh, Hell no.

And how many stations should have the FoMoCo ppl have had west of Masonic by now? Lots and lots. But how many to they have IRL? Zero. (And the prospects for anything soon look bleak – the more the Ford ppl push on installing rental stations, the more pushback they’ll get from residents. I’ll tell you, I can’t believe how many tens of millions of dollars Ford is going to spend over the next six years compared with what they’ve gotten so far. JMO.)

In conclusion, JUMP good, FORD bad.

We’ll have to wait and see how things shake out when GoBike Goes Electric, you know, a little bit, in April…

*

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Which Inspires More Protest: A 54-Bed “Lockdown Mental Ward” at Hayes and Shrader or a 20-Bike Rental Station from Ford? – See Petition for a 49 Square Block FordGoBike Ban

Wednesday, March 7th, 2018

Let’s see if I can pay off on that headline, but I’ll tell you, it’s not even close.

There’s this, at St. Mary’s – it inspired nary a peep of any protest, AFAIK.

But then there’s this, a neighborhood petition against a proposed FordGoBike rental station, also at Hayes and Shrader right across the street from St. Mary’s – it would convert five current parking spaces into a leased bike rental station. There are many Martin Luthers in this nabe, with the hammer and the nail at your door. Go ahead and read:

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See that? Petitioners are looking for a DMZ, a DeMotivateinternational* Zone, not less than seven blocks in any direction from Hayes and Shrader. You see? ‘Cause they just chased away another proposed station at Hayes and Clayton just last year, and they don’t want the Ford ppl coming with yet another proposed station anywhere close by.

I’ll tell you a story. Back in the 1990’s, (Old) General Motors went and spent six figures to pay for a playground, pretty close to Hayes and Shrader in Golden Gate Park. Here’s what happened – defacement of the letters forming the name of one of GM’s divisions, with extreme prejudice:

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See that – the signage marring was the response to too much corporate advertising for locals to handle, even though all GM did was to buy us a playground.

So that’s the environment that these corporate types from Michigan and New York don’t seem to understand. ‘Cause here they come, and then this happens, on Hayes Street as it happens:

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Do you see the similarity here, the reaction to marketing efforts from America’s #1 and #2 automakers?

Of course, Ford has some supporters, but they tend to be people who think it’d be a great idea to ban cars from Frisco altogether.

Isn’t it ironic?

Dont’cha think?

(‘Cause that’s the whole idea, of FoMoCo marketing cars to young people, who, you know, are hard to market to.)

In conclusion, large new mental ward MEH, small corporate bike rental station HELL NO.

This has been your Hayes and Shrader Update.

As to the future, well, IDK which side will win. As for our SFMTA, it’s all:

“…We (SFMTA) do not issue permits for bike share stations in front of buildings where the residents and/or property owners object.”

Or at least that’s what one of their senior planners said last year.

We’ll see…

*The operators of our local short-term bicycle rental monopoly. They used to be known as Alta Bike Share, but that name got wore out, owing to labor issues, among others. 

The Rental Bike Bros of Civic Center – But LimeBikes Have Been Banned by SFGov for a Year and a Half, to “Protect” Us, Right? Doing Tricks in Front of City Hall

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

One assumes these yoots came into town via BART, you know, one assumes.

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Now let’s hear from Actual Journalist Dan Brekke of KQED about the SFMTA Lime Bike Ban:

The companies, San Mateo-based LimeBike and Beijing-based Ofo, are among a handful of firms that hoped to expand into the city after the SFMTA began taking permit applications last July. But the firms were barred from doing business in San Francisco until at least mid-2019 when the SFMTA announced earlier this month it was granting an exclusive permit to New York-based Jump Bikes to place 250 dockless electric bikes on city streets for an 18-month pilot project.

And hey, isn’t it ironic, dontcha think, that one can venture into Civic Center from the Western Reaches, the Great Sand Waste of western Frisco and encounter more people riding JUMP!* rental bikes AND LimeBike rentals than vaunted FordGoBikes? And hold on, seeing ppl pushing stolen GoBikes doesn’t count, and seeing sometimes totally full “docks” of giant FORD**, FORD, FORD, FORD-logo’ed bikes sitting in the Western Addition, some for the whole live-long day, also doesn’t count.

(Is Ford Gobike like in the process of failing right now? We’ll see. Hey, is our SFMTA pleased with the low usage figures of the heavily marketed but somewhat unpopular with the populace GoBike? Well, not currently, but they’re not going to come right out and say that I don’t think.)

Anyway, ppl together riding LimeBikes in Frisco is new on me.

*By coincidence, also SFMTA-approved, oddly, in a kind of short term rental bike duopoly (the other half of which is the old-school “docked” Gobike program) that just got created by the SFMTA. But AFAIK, there are only 250 of them JUMP bikes on our streets so far. The usage figures show they get used on average 4.x times per day? I can believe that, at least for non-broken, operational JUMP bikes. 

**Who was kind of a Nazi – discuss the pros and cons of that allegation amongst yourselves

FordGoBike Goes Electric: Ford Motor Company’s GoBike “Bikeshare” Rental Scheme to Expand with Battery-Assist Bicycles in April 2018

Monday, January 8th, 2018

Pretty soon it won’t be so hard to pedal up our 48 hills on a heavy, clunky GoBike rental

See all the deets in this just-released press release:

 “Motivate will launch a pilot program adding 250 Ford GoBike-branded GenZe electric bicycles to its bikeshare fleet in San Francisco, beginning April 2018. (Photo: Business Wire)

SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Motivate International, the operator of the Bay Area’s regional bike share system, announced today it will add e-Bikes to its fleet, beginning with 250 e-Bikes in San Francisco this April. The pedal-assist e-Bikes, produced by Silicon Valley-based GenZe, will help riders by boosting their natural pedal power, so they can get up hills more easily and ride for longer distances. This new offering will integrate seamlessly with the Ford GoBike network and add a safe, reliable and affordable shared mobility option to the city.

“We believe e-Bikes will be a game-changer for the San Francisco bikeshare experience, vastly improving accessibility and rideability. All kinds of riders, no matter their fitness or riding level, will be able to zoom up hills and zip around the city.”

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“Our shared e-Bike is the newest product in our pipeline of innovative, sustainable mobility solutions,” said Jay Walder, CEO of Motivate. “We believe e-Bikes will be a game-changer for the San Francisco bikeshare experience, vastly improving accessibility and rideability. All kinds of riders, no matter their fitness or riding level, will be able to zoom up hills and zip around the city.”

“E-Bikes will give Bay Area residents and visitors one more option when traveling around San Francisco, which will help to make San Francisco more livable and reduce congestion and household transportation costs. We look forward to the expansion of the Ford GoBike e-Bike pilot to the other Ford GoBike cities,” said Alix Bockleman, deputy executive director for policy at the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), the regional governmental agency that partners with Motivate to bring bike sharing to the Bay Area. MTC also manages the Bay Area’s Clipper® card, which can now be used to unlock Ford GoBike.

“In many ways, e-Bikes are ideal for bikeshare programs because they make local, short-distance cycling easier for people,” said Vish Palekar, CEO of GenZe. “Our e-Bikes can go anywhere a conventional bicycle can go, including shared lanes and cycling paths – allowing riders to commute greater distances with no traffic and zero emissions. We’re excited to be a part of this innovative bikeshare initiative, and our partnership with Motivate.”

Riders can locate e-Bikes using the Ford GoBike app, rent them from any station where they are available using their Clipper card or smart phone, and park them at any station in San Francisco. For a limited time, Ford GoBike members and riders purchasing a day pass or single-trip fare will be able to ride an e-Bike at no extra cost. Bike Share for All members (low-income residents who become Ford GoBike annual members at the greatly discounted rate of $5 for their initial year) will always be able to use e-Bikes at no extra cost throughout the pilot, for rides of up to 60 minutes.

The custom e-Bikes were developed through a partnership with GenZe, a leading developer of zero-emissions, two-wheel electric vehicles. To announce the pilot program, the e-Bikes will be displayed at this week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas as a part of the tech show’s “Smart Cities” exhibit. The e-Bike’s maximum speed is 18 mph. It features a 345 Wh Li-ion battery and a user interface panel that lets riders know their speed and battery charge level.

By adding e-Bikes on a 12-month pilot basis, Motivate will be able to gather community feedback and work with its city partners to evaluate the results of the program before looking to add e-Bikes permanently to the Ford GoBike system.

Since launching in June, the Ford GoBike system has become an integral part of the Bay Area’s transportation network. With 262 stations and 2,600+ bikes on the ground across San Francisco, San Jose, Berkeley, Oakland and Emeryville, the system has generated more than half a million rides since launch in June of 2017. When completed in 2018, the 7,000-bike, 546-station Ford GoBike network will be the second-largest bike share system in North America, while setting new national standards in density, convenience and socio-economic equity.

About Motivate

Motivate, the global leader in bike share, operates tens of thousands of bikes across four continents. Led by an executive team with deep experience at the highest levels of public transportation and technology, the company is relentlessly focused on innovation and has a proven and sustainable business model to manage complex operations and logistics. A vertically integrated company, Motivate controls the full technology stack, enabling us to lead on the design and deployment of the next generation of bike share technology. Motivate works in close partnership with government officials to implement bike share systems that meet the unique needs of the cities in which we operate. Motivate systems, including Citi Bike in New York, Divvy in Chicago, Capital Bikeshare in the D.C. area, Hubway in the Boston area, BIKETOWN in Portland and Ford GoBike in the San Francisco Bay Area, are responsible for over 80 percent of bike share trips taken annually. To learn more please visit the Motivate newsroom at https://www.motivateco.com/news.

About the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC)

MTC is the transportation planning, financing and coordinating agency for the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area. For more information, go to http://mtc.ca.gov.

About GenZe

GenZe has a simple motto: “Two Wheels. One Planet. Zero Emissions.” GenZe is committed to providing easily-accessible personal transportation through e-Bikes and e-Scooters loaded with smart, connected technology and powered by sustainable, zero-emissions electric energy.

GenZe manufactures and assembles in Ann Arbor, Michigan with corporate headquarters in Silicon Valley. GenZe is a division of the globally-expanding $19 billion Mahindra Group, which focuses on enabling people to rise through new and better solutions to tomorrow’s challenges. The Mahindra Group is a worldwide leader in aerospace, automotive, utility vehicles, tractors, motorcycles, clean energy, and more. For more information on GenZe, visit www.genze.com.”

Does This Existing Bike Rental Business on City Land Compete with This Other Bike Rental Business Also on City Land?

Tuesday, December 19th, 2017

I think the Ford people (with the new blue FordGoBike rentals in the background) would say no and the legacy mom & pops (with regular blue rental bikes in the foreground) would say yes yes yes:

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Now, you’d think that if legacy bike rental outfits had cared about this, they would have gotten noncompete agreements in their contracts – you know within a certain number of feet, SFGov wouldn’t rent out to competing bike rental businesses. Oh that’s right, they did get noncompete agreements.

And yet, look at the photo above. So all this kind of stuff plus the recent rise of new-school dockless “bikeshare” has led to legal conflicts, burbling ‘neath the surface even right now.

And this comes after local authoritahs have spent EIGHT FIGURES on establishing (now) old-school docked “bikeshare.”

Oh well.

So look forward to reports of at least a partial resolution of these disputes in 2018. (Of course, everybody would admit that there’s at least some overlap in these business models, the question is how much.)

And in the meantime, the Ford people push onward, trying to go nearer to the Fish Wharf (which is a totally obvious place for a bike rental biz to be) and inside the Heart of the Mission (betwixt Hipster Mission and SFGH) and westward, ever westward, maybe even past Masonic – of course doing all these things by now was already baked into the cake. but you know, for the Ford people, mo $ = mo problems, in 2017 anyway.

And speaking of whom, maybe some of them, those making just $16.13 an hour, barely above minimum, will get a raise in 2018. (This is considered “living wages” by some (some people living outside of Frisco,  of course) so that’s what the Ford PR ppl crow about, but actually, $16.13 aint a living wage in SF, and also actually, this would be considered a living wage by those out-of-state pencil pushers only for certain people, those without dependents, for example.)

Anyway, that’s the update. I’ll tell you, this Gen X’er was surprised to see these govt-sanctioned bike rental outfits cattywampus across the street from each other the other day, hence this post.

ENDOFLINE

FordGoBike Lament: “Ford makes these crappy Go bikes that are worth nothing but they are going to charge me $1200 if I cannot return it.”

Monday, November 20th, 2017

One of our Ford Go Bikes/
Is missing/
Tonight

All the deets:

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This person might be new in America, but nevertheless sees this sitch with clarity:

“Stolen Ford Go-BIKE #12282 – $100 (alamo square / nopa)
Hello!
Ford makes these crappy Go bikes that are worth nothing but they are going to charge me 1200$ if I cannot return it. Someone stole it from the station I was at at the bottom of McAllister @ Laguna intersection.
I am offering a 100$ reward if found this week! Thanks!
The bike code on the side is #12282″

I wonder what it costs to make a GoBike. It’s certainly not worth $1200, that’s for sure. In fact, a sub-$100 ride from WalMart, a so-called Bike Shaped Object, is a better bike, IMO. Like, it would have actual tried and true gears, like 21 or more for ease of going uphill. And it would therefore have superior gearing range. And it would be lighter. And you wouldn’t have to pay to use it. And you wouldn’t have to worry having to return it someplace, gee the clock is ticking.*

And you wouldn’t have to worry about getting it stolen and being on the hook for $1200.

Oh well.

*Your WalMart tires will wear out quicker – the puncture-resistant Schwalbes on Ford’s GoBikes are superior to anything you’d get from Wally. (And they could be the #1 reason why ppl steal FordGoBikes.)

 

How to Get Rid of a Ford Motor Company GoBike Rental Station: Create a Boycott Webpage Then Wait a Few Days

Thursday, November 2nd, 2017

Say you don’t cotton to a Ford rental station right in front of your residence, like this:

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All you have to do is start a website called something like GoBike Boycott and then, well, you’ll have mighty Ford Motor Company / Motivate, International calling you up to say, “It’s gone, baby,” in so many words.

It’s hyperdemocracy in action.

Either Ford Rejected Palo Alto or Vice Versa – GoBike Rental Service Cancelled in PA – City is on “a New and Better Path”

Tuesday, October 31st, 2017

Ouch. This is how it was supposed to be, down StanFORD way:

Palo Alto expands bike share system with Ford’s help

But TWTATIN, see? Here’s the reason why Ford Motor Company ads won’t be rolling all over PA:

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So, not only will Palo Alto’s “bikeshare” rentals not have giant FORD logos on them, Palo Altons will have a newer and better program. Sounds like a win-win, considering all the baggage that comes with making a deal with FoMoCo.

Wonder if Ford Motor’s vaunted GoBike rental program will end up as three islands – SF, SJ and East Bay? (Of course, these blue bikes will continue to travel across bridges and tunnels from county to county, but that’s not allowed, you know, per se.)

(And as far as Frisco is concerned, it seems Ford is having trouble installing stations west of Masonic. Some neighbors are up in arms, mostly over the loss of parking spaces, and they hold a lot of sway in this town. Anyway, planned stations that were already supposed to be a done deal in the Upper Haight and on Hayes have stalled, and some Ford’s already given up on.)

Anyway, Ford and Palo Alto will always have the Ford Research and Innovation Center on Hillview.

Or not, either way.

I’m not sure how much the bay area needs Ford anyway…

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Ford Motor Gets Five Yards for ENCROACHMENT – Now Marketing GoBike Rentals as “Just $3 for Each Additional 15 Minutes”

Friday, October 20th, 2017

If you see the mom and pop owners of Frisco’s legacy bike rental businesses with their hands on their hips today…

…it’s due to this further ENCROACHMENT on their biz from wealthy Ford Motor Company / non-wealthy Motivate, International.

I’ll tell you, I’ve seen it all summer – tourists on GoBikes far far away from the closest stations headed towards, IDK, Hawk Hill and the ice cream shops of Sausalito. And I says, I says to myself, “Do these Euros know that they’re paying $12 an hour to rent a heavy bicycle?” And the answer is sometimes NO, owing to the way that these bikes are marketed, so the poor tourists just can’t understand why they’re getting charged three figures instead of the $10 or so they thought they were paying for a DayPass.

But on the other hand, some of them DO know what they’re paying. And guess what – they don’t care. It’s worth it to them. Oh, OK fine, that explains that.

And Ford Motivate wanted to offer three-hour passes not that long ago, until that idea got slapped down.

Anyway, check out yesterday’s offer:

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So don’t think of the $12 an hour as some kind of penalty, just think of it as the rental fee when you are price shopping your tourist bike rental.

That’s ENCROACHMENT, brother, so that’s FIVE YARDS.

All right, carry on FoMoCo. Let’s hope you can solve your Chariot issues as well, you know, those issues with the CHP what you’re in denial about…