By Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez : sfexaminer – excerpt
San Francisco’s transportation agency moved to potentially grant permits for at least four dockless bikeshare companies prior to facing legal challenges for potentially permitting one dockless bikeshare program in The City, the San Francisco Examiner has learned.
When Bluegogo, a similar dockless bikeshare company, discussed entry into San Francisco, city officials cried foul in January, fearing the potential for piles of bikes to litter city sidewalks.
Now, four dockless bikeshare companies — Spin, MoBike, LimeBike and Social Bicycle — have all been in discussion with the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency to begin operation in The City, according to records obtained by the Examiner.
Emailed discussions occurred just prior to — and in some cases, after — Bay Area Motivate, LLC and the SFMTA entered a “dispute resolution process,” mediated by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, to settle conflicts over San Francisco’s contract with the Ford GoBike bikeshare program.
The heart of the dispute is whether entering into an exclusivity contract with Motivate for Ford GoBike, which docks its bikes on city sidewalks, preven
ts San Francisco from granting permits to dockless bikeshare companies.
Though Motivate declined to comment, citing confidentiality agreements as part of the conflict-resolution process, the company has previously said “no.”… (more)
Where is the voice of the public in this discussion of who has access to our streets? Does the public want rental bikes taking over on our streets? Where does the public right to access and use the streets end and the private corporate right to buy our streets from the SFMTA begin? How is this effecting the small “legacy” bike companies that sell and repair private bikes? Do they have a say in this “space sale” SFMTA is engaging in?
Why don’t we show our appreciation by boycotting Ford? I know it is not Ford Bikes, but they are aligning themselves with Ford so let’s boycott Ford to show our solidarity with private citizens right to control our streets and keep them open to public use. NO PRIVATE SALES OR RENTALS OF OUR STREETS!