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Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 15th, 2019, 1:37 pm
by LakeCharles
Nice Ride and Lyft will roll out electric bikes this spring. 500 at first, with 1,300 more to come later. Lyft cited studies that in the 3 other cities they have rolled out e-bikes, the e-bikes get twice as much usage as pedal bikes.

http://www.southwestjournal.com/news/tr ... ric-bikes/

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 15th, 2019, 1:43 pm
by Multimodal
What is the justification for maximum assisted speeds above the average biking speed we want on city streets, of 10 mph or so?

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 15th, 2019, 2:13 pm
by Bob Stinson's Ghost
Is the quoted top speed pure electric drive? If you're strong and in a hurry could you pedal hard and push these up to 25?

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 15th, 2019, 2:22 pm
by amiller92
Multimodal wrote:
February 15th, 2019, 1:43 pm
What is the justification for maximum assisted speeds above the average biking speed we want on city streets, of 10 mph or so?
Why do we care how fast people bike on city streets? Trails have speed limits, but I don't think streets do.

And 10 mph is pretty slow. I'm super slow and I average more than that (although maybe not with winter studs or on a NiceRide).

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 15th, 2019, 2:29 pm
by SurlyLHT
amiller92 wrote:
February 15th, 2019, 2:22 pm
Multimodal wrote:
February 15th, 2019, 1:43 pm
What is the justification for maximum assisted speeds above the average biking speed we want on city streets, of 10 mph or so?
Why do we care how fast people bike on city streets? Trails have speed limits, but I don't think streets do.

And 10 mph is pretty slow. I'm super slow and I average more than that (although maybe not with winter studs or on a NiceRide).
I commute by bike and care about how fast e-bikes go given that I got cut-off by a car once Downtown and hit my regular bike's brakes and almost got run over and then cussed out by an e-biker who couldn't stop as quickly as I could. E-Bikes accelerate, handle and brake different than standard bikes. Which in turn affects how they interact with pedestrians, bicyclists and cars.

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 15th, 2019, 2:45 pm
by LakeCharles
If we are going to have a speed limit for bikes on city streets, 10 mph is an absurd choice for it. It would have to more reasonably be 20 mph or so.

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 15th, 2019, 3:06 pm
by Silophant
It's pretty easy to get up to 12mph or so, even on a Nice Ride (if you have a few blocks to accelerate). I think 15mph seems fine for the limit of the e-assist, since, like SurlyLHT said, they're heavy bikes (65lbs!) and aren't going to stop as quickly as a normal bike.

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 15th, 2019, 3:15 pm
by Multimodal
1. When I talk about “speed of bikes on streets”, I’m defining ‘street’ as the area from property line to property line, so this includes not just the area for cars, but also any bike lanes.

2. I’m not talking about speed limits right now, I’m talking about average speeds.

3. When talking about “maximum speed” of e-bikes, I’m talking about maximum *assisted* speed. I don’t expect an e-bike to slow you down if you’re physically fit and can bike 20 mph unassisted. But why should an e-bike assist you to 18 mph (as per article above)?

I’ve read that the average speed of urban cyclists on streets (open streets, painted bike lane, protected bike lane, whatever) is about 10 mph, give or take a few. Sure, fit, young people (like Mpls’ planners ) can easily go much faster than that, but when you average young, old, fit, unfit, parents with kids, uphill, downhill, daytime, nighttime, commuters, etc., you get about 10 mph. That’s a safe, comfortable speed to run errands and do other transportation-type things (too slow perhaps for recreation/sport).

Oftentimes when I mention on social media that I fear that e-bikes will be like cars—in that as technology improves and the marketers get ahold of engineering, e-bike speeds, weight, and risk will creep up—I am scolded for not thinking about those who *need* e-bikes, such as the elderly, disabled, or those who live in hilly areas.

OK, fine. Some people need or want assistance. But then the question is: assistance to what speed?

If people are old or infirm or have huge hills to go up, what assistance should e-bikes provide to them? Should they provide assistance up to 18-20 mph, which is what a lot of e-bikes are “limited”(!) to, because that’s the max speed that a fit person would typically ride?

Or do the old, infirm, & hilly city dwellers really need just enough e-bike assistance to go the average speed of other cyclists? Namely, 10 mph. Give or take a few.

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 16th, 2019, 8:28 am
by Multimodal
If our goal is to reduce speeds for cars—and I think it is—and we are looking to allow cities to reduce the state speed limit for cars (from 30 mph to 25 or 20), then why are we looking for bikes to go so fast?

I don’t get it.

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 16th, 2019, 9:29 am
by John21
This is great. I’m currently bikeless and having an e-assist option makes a membership pretty attractive to me. I still may buy a new bike but it will be nice to have that option on warmer days.

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 16th, 2019, 11:06 am
by Silophant
I think that 10mph is the overall average speed of someone biking through an urban environment, including slowing down to stop before crossing streets, taking turns, etc. If the top speed of e-bikes is limited to 10mph, than their average speed is going to be, what, 7 or 8 mph?

I do think our goal should be to reduce speeds for cars, because speeding cars are lethal, but I don't see why it should be an immutable fact that bikes go slower than cars. If anything, about the best way I can think of to shift car trips to bike trips is to have cars and bikes go about the same speed. Cars will still have comfort and cargo capacity advantages, no doubt, but having the speed be the same would be a huge equalizer.

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 18th, 2019, 9:48 am
by amiller92
Multimodal wrote:
February 15th, 2019, 3:15 pm
3. When talking about “maximum speed” of e-bikes, I’m talking about maximum *assisted* speed. I don’t expect an e-bike to slow you down if you’re physically fit and can bike 20 mph unassisted. But why should an e-bike assist you to 18 mph (as per article above)?
18 mph as an maximum speed means something less than that as an average speed. 18 just does not like a particularly fast top speed to me, although I take the point that these bikes are heavy and may not stop as well.
I’ve read that the average speed of urban cyclists on streets (open streets, painted bike lane, protected bike lane, whatever) is about 10 mph, give or take a few. Sure, fit, young people (like Mpls’ planners ) can easily go much faster than that, but when you average young, old, fit, unfit, parents with kids, uphill, downhill, daytime, nighttime, commuters, etc., you get about 10 mph. That’s a safe, comfortable speed to run errands and do other transportation-type things (too slow perhaps for recreation/sport).
When I commute on my road bike I average about 12 mph and pretty much every other person on a bike that I encounter passes me. 10 mph is very slow, especially outside of downtown and especially as a top speed.

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 19th, 2019, 8:53 am
by Multimodal
amiller92 wrote:18 mph as an maximum speed means something less than that as an average speed. 18 just does not like a particularly fast top speed to me, although I take the point that these bikes are heavy and may not stop as well.

When I commute on my road bike I average about 12 mph and pretty much every other person on a bike that I encounter passes me. 10 mph is very slow, especially outside of downtown and especially as a top speed.
18 mph as a maximum speed may not seem very fast when you’re on an unprotected bike lane and can glide across the painted bike lane line to pass a slower cyclist, or when you’re biking around Bde Maka Ska first thing in the morning on a weekend when the park is empty.

But on a busy protected bikeway, we don’t want people on bikes going anywhere near this speed. This is the very reason we are demanding separated bike lanes: to keep faster, more dangerous vehicles away from slower bikes.

Also, a fit young cyclist could sustain 18 mph, but average people certainly can’t. It’s not a sustained speed people would experience very often. Yet an e-bike can sustain it indefinitely, so it can become closer to an average speed. This is fine on an empty path, but we’re working towards more people cycling, busier paths, and more bike congestion (as a good thing). These two facts do not mesh well.

And, finally, I constantly struggle with this: What problems do e-bikes uniquely address? It’s not the “last mile” problem, because any old bike will do that. Is it the problem where the mobility challenged or elderly need some assistance? OK , this one I get. Is it that e-bikes allow you to go/commute faster & farther? Hmm, this is a problem that cars solve, and we see the transportation, land use, density, & sustainability problems that that “solution” has caused. Is it the need to get places that transit doesn’t go? I think we should work on better transit, not e-bikes.

Meanwhile manufacturers are making e-bikes go faster & faster, as motors & batteries get lighter & more efficient and businesses need to keep profits up, to the point that high-end ones are basically motorcycles. As people buy these, there will be increasing pressure to gradually increase the maximum allowable speed.

We are going down the same path that cars brought us.

Re: Bike Share

Posted: February 19th, 2019, 4:53 pm
by karen nelson
I have an pedal assist ebike and ride it on city streets and trails to work - I get passed at 20 mph, on flats and downhills, all the time by more fit regular bikers. I average 18 mph because I don't slow down going up hills much. On Gateway trail on weekday mornings, there are so few people I feel comfortable going 20+ mph but e-assist cuts off after 20 mph.

Re: Bike Share

Posted: April 2nd, 2019, 4:08 pm
by John21
I guess I must of missed this but in the email I got from Nice Ride today it said that won't have bikes in St Paul this year. What gives?

Re: Bike Share

Posted: April 2nd, 2019, 5:49 pm
by seanrichardryan
St. Paul was already very poorly served. Has anyone seen the 2019 station map yet? Want to know if I should renew or not...

Re: Bike Share

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 7:22 am
by alexschief
I'm sure it has to do with St. Paul's bizarre decision to choose Lime as their preferred dockless bike company. Now, in the least surprising news of the year, Lime has pulled out as well.

The big underlying issue really is that St. Paul has always been a tough market for bike share because it's a tough place to bike. The city's leadership has never prioritized bicycling infrastructure, and it continues not to do so. The Capital City Bikeway and Pelham Bikeway are really the only exceptions. The biggest bicycling fight in the past few years was to put ordinary striped lanes on Cleveland, and that took a year. It's endlessly frustrating, because St. Paul has this complex where it has to learn every lesson and study every topic on its own—seeing what works across the river and just copying it is somehow never an option. I hope Lime and Nice Ride pulling out might be the wakeup call that St. Paul needs, but I'm not optimistic. Only elections (and maybe some significant turnover in the upper levels of the Public Works department, I'm not sure exactly where the malaise is), can do that.

Re: Bike Share

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 7:45 am
by Multimodal
Is Lime pivoting from bikes to scooters? I’ve heard conflicting reports of what they’re doing in Edina this year—one source said bikes & scooters, the other said scooters only.

Lime’s modus operandi has apparently been to surround Mpls with their vehicles, getting support from St. Paul & several suburbs, since they didn’t get the Mpls contract.

Anyone know if Lime will be deploying bikes to Golden Valley & other suburbs this year, or just scooters?

As I think about this, e-scooters go as fast as e-bikes, but you don’t have to pedal. Could this be the first step of pushing non-car, non-bike (pesky pedal requirements), networks of rented electric vehicles around cities? Going in the same direction as Uber’s master plan (self-driving cars, getting rid of pesky, expensive drivers without needing autonomous vehicles that now seem further away than ever) of a highly profitable almost-monopoly network in every city?

Re: Bike Share

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 8:00 am
by SurlyLHT
MPR has a story on it, which doesn't seem to answer all the questions. So did St Paul choose Lime as their preferred, and then they backed out of the bikes leaving St Paul with nothing? The article seems to also imply somehow that this is related to Lyft buying Motivate.

This seems to be a blow to the city given that many peer and smaller cities have bike share. I don't blame Nice Ride given the economics of everything they're trying to do.


https://www.mprnews.org/story/2019/04/0 ... ot-st-paul

Re: Bike Share

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 8:55 am
by EOst
alexschief wrote:
April 3rd, 2019, 7:22 am
I'm sure it has to do with St. Paul's bizarre decision to choose Lime as their preferred dockless bike company. Now, in the least surprising news of the year, Lime has pulled out as well.

The big underlying issue really is that St. Paul has always been a tough market for bike share because it's a tough place to bike. The city's leadership has never prioritized bicycling infrastructure, and it continues not to do so. The Capital City Bikeway and Pelham Bikeway are really the only exceptions. The biggest bicycling fight in the past few years was to put ordinary striped lanes on Cleveland, and that took a year. It's endlessly frustrating, because St. Paul has this complex where it has to learn every lesson and study every topic on its own—seeing what works across the river and just copying it is somehow never an option. I hope Lime and Nice Ride pulling out might be the wakeup call that St. Paul needs, but I'm not optimistic. Only elections (and maybe some significant turnover in the upper levels of the Public Works department, I'm not sure exactly where the malaise is), can do that.
Cleveland is the exception on bike projects in St. Paul, not the norm, and if you think that's the only bike lane fight that has happened you haven't been paying attention. The city has built or is in the process of building a dozen miles of new trails around the city, including high-quality protected bikeways on Wheelock Pkwy, Johnson Pkwy, Como Ave, and Plato Blvd. It has also added more than 20 miles of generally high-quality bike lanes since 2015, in the process removing more parking spaces than almost any other city in the country (including Minneapolis). The city today has its most bike-friendly mayor ever, with a high-ranking staff person making new and better bike infrastructure a priority, and a stable majority on the City Council that hasn't killed or watered down a bike lane project since the Bicycle Plan was passed. The city is studying how to do a short-term implementation of its downtown bikeway plan in the next few years. And for the first time, there is a dedicated pot of money to do proactive bicycle improvement projects, instead of piggybacking on street maintenance projects or seeking federal grants.

Is progress slow compared to Minneapolis? Sure. But Minneapolis has a budget that is more than $1 billion larger (almost 2.5x the size of St. Paul's!) and has a more robust street grid--making bike boulevards easy--and arterial streets that are 14-20 feet wider. Building bikeways in St. Paul is hard. That might not be easy to see from all the way in Philadelphia, but real progress is happening, and attitudes like this don't help.