By Kyle Field
Santa Monica and Venice Beach are two iconic Southern California destinations that embody the beach lifestyle in 2 very different ways. The upscale shopping mecca that is Santa Monica sports lots of EV chargers — many of which are free — and the architecture in the area exudes modern environmental awareness and efficiency… which sits in stark contrast to much of Venice beach, with its much more laid back atmosphere, including its classic beach boardwalk that’s still clinging to the last vestiges of the hippy beach lifestyle from the 70s.
Both, however, share the common bond of a strong desire to do the right thing for the environment. Rolling all those things together, bikesharing seems like a natural fit. The successful young hipster professional is eco conscious, wants to stay in shape, and doesn’t want to pay for parking or an unnecessary car. The beach bum crashing on his buddy’s house only has a few bucks a day to get around and hustle for a few bucks more. The unemployed single dad can’t afford a car but needs a few miles of mobility to put in some job applications. The surfer needs to get 3 miles to his favorite break. And now… all those people can… Breeze with ease!
Heh, okay, that was cheezy. But on a more serious note, new bikesharing service Breeze Bike Share just launched with 75 locations and 500 bikes (no, not 500 bikes at each station… that’s the total 🙂 ). While I was up in San Francisco a few years back, the new bikesharing service there had just launched… like, 30 minutes before I walked up to the stand, so I gave it a whirl. I was very impressed with how it really freed me up to cost effectively tour around the town, checking bikes in and out whenever I wanted — it was great. On top of that, I even worked up a bit of a sweat.
The new bikes are bright green, so they are very visible and unique, which should act as a theft deterrent. They are the beach cruiser style with a little basket on front for a bottle of water or bag of groceries. On the tech side of things, they have onboard computers with GPS tracking and a headlight in case you want to use them after dark… or before daytime if you’re an early bird. They also feature normal biker features like 8 speeds, adjustable seats, and integrated locks. Roll that all together and you get a pretty spiffy package that really lowers the bar for folks wanting to get out on a bike and get around town.
The new service is operated by CycleHop, which has bikesharing programs set up in 6 cities across North America, with more on the way. On a side note, biking is a great way to reduce your personal footprint, save a lot of time vs sitting in traffic, save a ton of cash on transportation, and even get a free workout (no more gym membership 😀 ).
Check out the video below of the press conference announcing the launch of Breeze Bike Share: