Mobike no more: dockless bikes could soon be gone from UK streets
Britain has shocked global firms with the amount of vandalism and theft of public hire bikes
The two-wheeled Chinese invasion of Manchester happened with little warning. Suddenly, late last June, they appeared on street corners. Silver and orange and bike-like, but unlike any bicycle most people had seen before. The tyres were solid, there was no chain, no gears and no instructions, just a mysterious barcode on the handlebar stem.
Dockless public bike hire – bikes that you could pick up and put down without locking them away – had arrived in the UK. Manchester city council was delighted that Mobike, a Chinese firm backed by multibillion dollars of venture capital investment, had chosen Manchester for its first European incursion. “We do things differently here,” goes the local maxim. Second city? First, more like. Poor old Londoners, lumbered with their dull grey Boris bikes, having to trundle to a docking station any time they want to park and charged £2 for the privilege.
Related: Manchester’s bike-share scheme isn’t working – because people don’t know how to share | Helen Pidd
Related: On your bikes … testing the new breed of dockless cycle hire schemes
Related: On your bike: the best and the worst of city cycle schemes
Source: Guardian Transport
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