Like the popular bike rental program in Lyon, Paris and other European capitals, Tel Aviv Municipality has announced that is in the process of choosing a company to market and manage a city-wide public bike rental program. For a nominal fee, a few shekels perhaps, riders can pick up bikes at one of 25 bike rental stations and drop them off at a bike depot station near their destination. The program is expected to help rid the city of its high air pollution levels. But with limited bike paths in Tel Aviv (74 kms in length), sparsely-spaced pick up and return facilities, and bike thievery beyond your imagination – some wonder how convenient and successful such bike rental depots will be.
We also wonder how fair it is that marketing and advertising companies can earn tenders for running such programs – as is the case in France. With an expansion of advertising campaigns by large private companies seeping onto public billboards, we think that tenders for the bike rentals should be awarded and managed by companies with no other ulterior business motive. Your thoughts? ::Haaretz