The third season of “Astana Bike” bicycle rental started on May 1 in Astana, and the public fund Velocity.kz, which is the operator of the project, does not expect a decline in the number of users of the system due to the increased cost of bicycle rent this year. This is reported by "Khabar 24” TV channel.
"The city's network of automated rental bicycles opens in spring for the third time in a row, but this year the cost of the season ticket has increased by 100 percent, which can reduce the number of users of the system. So far, only technical experts travel by bicycles - and only from the truck to the bicycle station”, TV channel journalists reported.
Authors of the article note that residents of Astana, who are accustomed to using the “Astana Bike” system for 3 years, this time treat it with caution that is associated with an increase in rental prices.
"During these three years, bicycles have undergone some kind of cushioning. We need to repair them and have to maintain the stations. So we decided to do a little price hike for the better production of services," explained technical director of Velocity.kz, Yerlan Zhamalov.
According to the channel, for 3 years the number of users has increased by 11 times - from 600 people to 7000.
"The company often received complaints about the lack of available seats at bicycle stations and the lack of bicycles. This year they do not plan to strengthen the infrastructure in “Astana Bike”. They also do not expect a decrease in the number of users due to the price increase," report says.
Velocity.kz has decided to count on tourists.
"The fact is that we will have EXPO. Many tourists will come. The number of tourists will be increased by SMS-use. There were 6800 users last year, many of them kept their subscribers, they are likely to activate them this year. I think that the number of users this year will be thousand or two more,” Zhamalov said.
As noted in the report, in 2014 “Astana Bike” presented a socially important project designed to transfer a part of the population to cycling, unload the capital's roads and improve the ecology.
"The organizers intended to increase the number of stations and bicycles, and stated that the network of bicycle lanes will be held throughout the city, but all this has remained in the plans," the TV channel summarizes.
Let us remind, earlier it became known that "Astana Bike” bike rental stations are planned to be installed on the territory of the world specialized exhibition EXPO 2017. There are already 150 bicycle stations and 1000 bicycles in the capital of Kazakhstan. Last season more than 6 thousand people used the services of "Astana Bike". The main activity is in the morning hours and evening time. Regarding raising the subscription fee in Velocity.kz stated, that it will maintain a high level of quality of service of bicycles and stations, conduct the timely repair of bicycles and replacement of worn out parts.
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