Thursday, June 10, 2010

Now Hiring a Bike from a Metro Station Got a Lot Easier

You can now hire a bike from a Metro station and drop it off at a designated spot in the vicinity. A new pilot project, started at Rohini Metro station on World Environment Day, works on a smart card system and is meant to promote cycling as an eco-friendly last-mile feeder link to the Metro.

This means commuters don’t need to return to the station from where they rented the bike. Multiple cycle stands are being created at prominent locations such as residential pockets, malls, commercial centers, local markets near the Metro station. Rent is set at Rs 3 for every 15 minutes.

Use smart cards to hire cycles at Metro stations

The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation has started a cycle feeder service to promote the use of this eco-friendly mode of transport. Commuters can rent a bike at the Metro stand, ride it to the destination and drop the bike off there.

The feeder service is aimed at promoting cycling which is a non polluting and eco friendly mode of transport as a last mile connection from Metro stations to areas in the vicinity. The service is being started from the Rohini East Metro station where the first cycle stand was inaugurated on Saturday. The initiative was announced with a bicycle rally, in which more than a hundred cycling enthusiasts participated. The vendor plans to create at least four more such stands in the area by the end of the month.

To start with, 25 brand new cycles have been pressed into service at the stands. ‘‘Commuters will be able to register with a nominal refundable deposit of Rs 300. The fare will be calculated according to the time spent by the commuter after he takes the cycle. A time slot of 15 minutes will cost the user Rs 3. The commuters will be provided a rechargeable smart card, which they will swipe at the cycle stations before and after every use. The amount from the smart card will get reduced as per the time taken by the commuter,’’ said Atul Jain of Delhi Cycles Pvt Ltd.

The response has been overwhelming. ‘‘We have created one stand near the Metro station and are running an awareness campaign. The response has been phenomenal as we have already got 132 registrations for enrollment. We are going to start issuing smart cards now,’’ Jain added. The service will be started on a trial basis initially and will be extended to other stations later.