U-bikes piling up along Beacon Avenue in Oak Bay

Local resident has been stacking up the unused bikes at Municipal Hall

Bright green U-bikes have been rolling into Oak Bay.

Local resident Richard Kutcher is worried the current program is gathering too much speed. He’s concerned that Oak Bay’s status as a destination within the CRD, combined with it’s demographics, won’t bode well for bike sharing in its current form.

“People will bring them here and not take them away,” he said. “ It’s techno litter.”

READ MORE: U-Bicycle plans to ride into Greater Victoria

Since November, Kutcher has been noticing riders using the bikes to cycle into Oak Bay, then use other modes of transportation to leave the municipality. To hammer this point to council, he’s piled several left-behind bikes at Municipal Hall. Few—if any—of the bikes have since been moved, evidenced by the growing amount of leaves and dust on them.

“Everyone who lives here has a car, or they have parents that drive. The rest probably aren’t tech-savy,” he said.

U-Bicycle recently moved from a dock-less system to a virtual parking zone. Users will be charged until bikes are moved to within a 10 metre radius of certain pre-designated locations. Even if the parking zone is a bike-rack, users are not obligated to use them. This, Kutcher said, could turn into a liability for the city if someone was to trip over one.

Screenshot showing U-bikes left within the allowed radius of a parking zone, Dec. 5 2018. (Jesse Laufer / News staff)

Council adjusted bylaws that created a path for bike sharing to enter the city during a Nov. 13 meeting. A report from Daniel Horan, Director of Engineering Services, reccomended the move. The report did note that public concerns have been raised about overcrowding on sidewalks, smartphone connectivity, and potential requirements to add more bike racks.

READ MORE: Turf War – Victoria bike rental company complains of “uneven” playing field

Part of the report promised that “if Council adopts the changes to the Streets and Traffic Bylaw, staff will complete an agreement that defines a one-year pilot project with U-Bicycle”.

Kutcher emailed his concerns to Horan, and was told Dec. 3 that the trial has not yet begun. Kutcher says that he isn’t opposed to bike-sharing, but the current model isn’t right for Oak Bay. He would have more support for a system similar to Mobi in Vancouver, where bikes are locked in permanent physical stations, located in key areas.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Canadian airline passengers to be elibible for $1,000 in compensation for delayed flights

Passengers can also receive compensation for overbooking, lost luggage and other inconveniences

Study shows Oak Bay’s dwindling population is rapidly aging

Housing Needs Study says Oak Bay facing a shortfall of 349 bedrooms

More rowers come forward with complaints about coach, criticism of UVic

Barney Williams is accused of verbal abuse and harassment

Sooke student hit by vehicle in high school crosswalk

Injuries appear to be non-life threatening, but student was taken to hospital by ambulance

Canada ranks among countries most impacted by severe weather

Canada has climbed from the 42nd spot to ninth on the Climate Risk Index

VIDEO: Andrew Scheer to resign as Conservative leader

Decision comes after weeks of Conservative infighting following the October election

POLL: Do you have a real or artificial Christmas tree?

The lights are up, holiday shoppers are bustling through the streets and… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of Dec. 10

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

RCMP take care when burying sex mannequins found this year in Manning Park

Police tasked with ensuring the mannequins were completely disposed

Mount Washington receives more than 30cm of snow

Last week, the resort announced they were pushing back opening day due to lack of snow.

B.C. seniors need better vaccine protection, advocate says

Home support down, day programs up in annual rating

RCMP rescue wounded raven on Vancouver Island highway

Bird expected to make full recovery

Be aware of ticks when chopping down Christmas trees

Potential for ticks to transfer to clothing

Most Read