These Videos Show Bike Share Mischief In Paris – Is Brooklyn Heights Next?

While NYC prepares for the launch of the Citi Bike Share program, it’s worth taking a look at the King of All Bike Shares in France to get an idea of what we can expect in the next few months.

Paris launched its Velib bike sharing program in 2007. The New York Times wrote in 2009 that the “French utopia has met a prosaic reality” as many bikes were stolen, vandalized with others ending up on the black market in Eastern Europe and North Africa. The article noted that 80 percent of the initial fleet of 20,600 bikes had been stolen or damaged.

The paper quoted a Le Monde editorial which said, “The symbol of a fixed-up, eco-friendly city has become a new source for criminality. The Vélib’ was aimed at civilizing city travel. It has increased incivilities.”

The Paris program is now considered a hit and all observers claim New York’s will also be very popular.

However, anyone who has witnessed a tourist clumsily and illegally riding a bike on the Promenade or watched a determined 5 year old ride their scooter (also illegally) down the Squibb Park ramp and bridge or dodged skateboarders and BMXers anywhere in the neighborhood knows that the scenes in these Paris videos are destined to be in our future:

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  • brooklynheightsblog


  • brooklynheightsblog

    News flash: Not judging.

  • zburch

    Why not post some positive articles about bike share like this one? “From London to D.C., Bike-Sharing Is Safer Than Riding Your Own Bike”

    After witnessing the program in Paris and seeing how great it was, it was a bummer to come home to all the negative yammering. It would be great for NYC if we can make it work and not bite ourselves in the arse.

    I don’t think being for a corporate sponsored bike share is very liberal.

  • Joe A

    The $9.95 day pass is for only 30 minute rides. Unlimited but only 30 minutes at a time. Not very tourist friendly.

  • Joe A

    Very disappointing Homer. Very slanted, dated, hyperbolic article. One would think you have an agenda to distort the facts.

    I love that buried in the scary story with scary videos is this one line The Paris program is now considered to be a hit. Oh, Nevermind.

  • David on Middagh

    That’s what we’re saying. But I predict tourists will try it anyway.

  • Joe A

    Agreed but they will be a small percentage of total users.

  • Arch Stanton

    “We do find transportation alternative types to be overly rigid, judgmental and utterly incapable of being capable of understanding anyone’s point but their own”
    Oh like none of the “anti bike people” fit that description.

  • Hicks St Guy

    Right, Homer, BH is a retirement community where nothing new is welcomed, and is automatically attacked.

  • Boerum Bill

    Last summer, we used the Paris Velib and biked around Parc de Saint-Cloud, as well as along the Seine. It was FABULOUS! Homer, turn in your Metrocard and use the CitiBikes EXCLUSIVELY for one month. You’ll look better, feel better and be better informed.

  • MonroeOrange

    Without Tourist using this, it will fail.

  • Arch Stanton

    I think tourists will use the program, especially the young and those on a budget. Think of the ease of getting from one point of interest to another; from the hotel to a museum to a restaurant to a theater to the Empire State Building and back to the hotel…

  • Joe A

    News flash: Not funny either.

  • Joe A

    Once again Monroe displays his cluelessness.

  • Jazz

    Then you need a vacation.

  • Jazz

    I don’t recall BHB saying that.

  • Arch Stanton

    It’s in their post above.