The Seoul Metropolitan Government launched a bike-sharing service, which is called Seoul Bike “Ddareungi” in 2015 with a fleet of 2,000 bicycles. Now the number of the bikes is projected to increase dramatically.
The Seoul City unveiled its plan to add another 3600 bikes in five major regions including Shinchon, Sangam, Dongdaemun, Yongsan, and central Seoul near Gwanghwamun every 500 meters. The city government will increase the number of the rental stations from 150 up to 450, thereby helping the citizens enjoy more easily and conveniently ride the bikes through the public bike sharing service.
It was found that citizens use public bikes mainly when travelling short distances.
According to the data collected by February, 2016, citizens with seasonal vouchers (70% of the total use) frequently use public bikes when they travel within 30 kilometers for 20 minutes (on average). Central Seoul near Gwanghwamun has the highest rate of users. People in their 20s (40%) were the age group with which the service is most popular, and in terms of gender, the number of male users (67%) is nearly twice the number of female users.
The member of the service who rode the bike most is a seventy-something Seoul citizen. He used the bike 611 times. He said that he rode the bike mostly when he used public transportation for his delivery service.
The number of rides by foreigners was 750, and they rode the bikes mainly in Shinchon and central Seoul near Gwanghwamun. The Seoul City is planning to develop the “Ddareungi Tour Course” during which visitors can look around the five regions on the bikes including Jeongdong, Cheonggyecheon, Insadong, Bukchon, Seochon, which are all tourist attractions.
From October 15th, 2015, the beginning of the bike sharing service, to February, 2016, 3,800 citizens subscribed to the service and 31,000 vouchers (including seasonal voucher) were sold. The number of rides amounted to 149,000 in total.
By the time when the service is expanded, the Seoul City will have improved the sharing service to fulfil the citizens’ requests by starting the “two-hour basic rental time system”, and covering the medical costs with insurances.
First of all, to prevent a bike from being taken by only one person, the users should return the bikes within an hour after rental. The users can have more options thanks to the new basic rental time system
Now, if one rides the bike for two hours, then the user should pay 3,000 won (1,000 won for basic fee and 2,000 won for additional charges), but if the two-hour basic rental time is applied, the user can enjoy
riding the bike at a cheaper price, 2,000 won, 1,000 down from 3,000 won.
The insurance coverage for bike accidents will be extended.
In case of injuries caused by the accidents unrelated to bike defaults, the previous insurances used to cover only expenses for hospitalization, aftereffects of injuries, or death. Now, any medical fees will be covered by new insurances.
As the number of the public bikes, the roads for them should be expanded.
For the safety of the bike riders, The Seoul City will build additional 10.9 kilometers of bike roads in Yanghwa-ro and Mapo-ro so that the five regions including central Seoul near Gwanghwamun and Sinchon can be connected to newly designated service regions such as Yangcheon-gu, and Yeongdeungpo.
The government will expand the bike roads in newly designated service regions including Yongsan (6.1k), Dongdaemun (10.6k), Yeongdeungpo (15.9k) areas, which amount to 36.8 kilometers all combined.
Furthermore, the Seoul City will establish a bicycle crossing at the intersection and 1,092 safety facilities including road strips and direction signboards on the existing bicycle permit roads, and also improve the safety facilities for the side streets in Seoul and tighten up on illegal parking on the bike roads.
The municipal government will create a video clip which provides the guidelines on how to apply for membership, purchase a voucher, rent and return, lock the bikes, and dock the bike so that new riders can use the bikes more easily and conveniently. This tutorial will be distributed in March through the homepage of Seoul Bike.