HCMC district to launch public bike service in September

By Phan Anh   May 4, 2021 | 05:00 pm PT
HCMC district to launch public bike service in September
Two girls ride public bicycles in HCMC's District 1 in October 2020 when the investor put them on trial. Photo by VnExpress/Ha Giang.
HCMC plans to trial launch its public bike service in the downtown District 1 on September 2, Vietnam's National Day, according to a company that will operate the scheme.

Do Ba Dan, chairman of the Hanoi information-communications technology firm Tri Nam Company, said the public biking scheme would have test runs that last 10-20 days in August.

The project, called Mobike, will be trialed for a year in District 1.

The firm is currently importing 500 bikes, of which 400 would be used for operation and the rest kept as reserve. If demand is high, the company would request HCMC to add more bikes to the scheme, the Tuoi Tre newspaper reported.

The plan will have 43 bike stations placed along different streets in District 1. Users can download the Mobike app on their phones to find the nearest station, and scan a QR code to unlock the bike.

Each station would have 10-20 bikes equipped with smart locks, GPS services and other equipment. Renting a bike would cost around VND5,000 ($0.22) per half an hour, he said, adding that the company is considering additional renting time frames and promotional deals.

HCMC currently has almost nine million registered private vehicles, including 825,000 automobiles and 8.12 million motorbikes, according to municipal transport department.

The city has since 2016 been considering various ways to limit private vehicles in the downtown area to ease congestion.

It plans to spend VND393 trillion ($16.93 billion) over the next decade on improving public transportation and limiting the use of private vehicles.

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