Lyft shocks with e-bike price hike, and Uber bikes leave town

By Adam Brinklow :curbed – excerpt

It’s a vicious cycle

xIf you’re in the habit of riding the pedal-assisted e-bikes that have become ubiquitous across San Francisco in recent years—but not all of San Francisco, more on that in a minute—your commute will become more complicated soon, particularly if you happen to bike in some of SF’s outlying neighborhoods.

Starting in March, Lyft, which operates the black-and-pink Bay Wheels rentals throughout the city, will raise prices due to operational costs and introduce some slightly dizzying new schemes to things.

Via a Medium post, the company explained that it will start charging more because “e-bikes need charged batteries and can be parked at stations or public bike racks, they cost more to operate.”… (more)

So stop protecting and enhancing this program now by installing parking stations for a failing business.

What’s white, male and 5 feet wide? Bay Area’s bike lanes

By Phil Matier : sfchronicle – excerpt

When it comes to exclusivity, one would be hard-pressed to beat San Francisco’s bike lanes, where most regular riders are male, affluent, white “bike bros,” with 1 in 4 making $250,000 or more a year, according to the most recent U.S. census data.

And it’s not just in San Francisco.

“Bicycle commuting is mostly the province of wealthier white men all across the Bay Area,” Metropolitan Transportation Commission spokesman John Goodwin said.

Just look at the numbers…

Across the Bay Area, white riders represented 61% of the bike commuters, followed by Hispanics at 17%, Asians at 15% and African Americans at 2.4%.

In San Francisco, the white percentage was even higher — 65% of regular riders — followed by Asians and Hispanics at 14% each and African Americans at just over 1% of regular San Francisco bike commuters. How do those numbers compare to the city’s population as a whole? Whites: 40%; Asian: 34%; Hispanic: 15%; African American: 5%.… (more)

‘I canceled my membership’ — customer backlash after Lyft hikes Bay Area bikeshare prices

By Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez : sfexaminer – excerpt

Lyft announced a price hike and changes to its Bay Wheels bikeshare program last week that sent its customers reeling.

On March 2 Bay Area e-bike riders will begin paying per-minute fees, and the company will charge an extra $2 when riders don’t leave their bikes at a sidewalk dock.

For members, the e-bike payments used to essentially be a flat fee — but now they will have to watch the clock when they ride…(more)