Two days before Ottawa-Gatineau's bike sharing service is set to launch, the National Capital Commission has announced the locations of the ten stations, with seven stations in downtown Ottawa and another three in Gatineau.
The Capital Bixi bike-sharing program, run by Montreal’s Public Bike System Company, is set to launch Wednesday, with 10 stations with a total of 100 bicycles serving downtown Ottawa and Gatineau.
The Ottawa locations of the stations are:
- at the intersection of Elgin and Queen streets
- close to the intersection of William and Rideau streets
- close to the intersection of Booth Street and Vimy Place
- at the intersection of Lyon and Queen streets
- at the intersection of O’Connor and Queen streets
- at the intersection of York and Dalhousie streets
- at the intersection of Murray Street and Mackenzie Avenue.
The Gatineau locations are:
- at the intersection of Promenade du Portage and Laval Street
- at the intersection of Des Allumettières Boulevard and Laurier Street
- at the intersection of Alexandre-Taché Boulevard and Montcalm Street.
When the NCC put up a proposed contract last summer, the plan was originally for 50 stations and 500 bicycles and the NCC has said those numbers remain the goal.
Scaled-back program in Capital region
But with the Ottawa and Gatineau opting not to commit to the program, the NCC decided to go it alone with a scaled-back program.
The bike rentals cost $5 for 24 hours, $12 for 72 hours, $28 for 30 days or $78 for a year, plus additional fees for trips longer than 30 minutes from one bike station to another.
Those prices are lower than what Toronto residents pay and similar to what residents in Montreal pay. But Montreal residents have access to 5,000 bicycles at 400 stations.
Paul DeMaio, a U.S. bike-sharing consultant, says one way the NCC might get more stations is to encourage businesses to convert parking spaces in Bixi stations.
"By helping to fund a station in front of their business, they're in effect, you know, putting a bus shelter, or a metro station in front of their business," said DeMaio.