Amsterdam bans dockless bikes

Amsterdam has started to remove dockless bike-share scheme bikes from the city’s streets.

A posting on the city council’s Facebook page said:

“We have invested to create more bicycle parking spaces, and we do not want these to be taken by the many commercial bike-sharing systems."

The posting added: "Of course, you are allowed to park a bike in the public space, even a rented or shared bike. What is not allowed however, is using the public space as a place of issuance, which is exactly what a number of shared bike companies is doing now, while occupying scarce parking places badly needed by Amsterdam residents and visitors."

The municipality has stated that all dockless share bikes will be temporarily banned. Talks have been initiated with the dockless companies, including oBike from Singapore, Donkey Republic from Denmark, Dropbyke and FlickBike from Lithuania and Urbee and Hello-Bike from the Netherlands.

"To make sure that there will be space in the racks for the bikes of Amsterdam residents, the shared bikes will be removed in the coming period," stated the council.

Dockless bike sharing schemes are proliferating around the world. Most of them originated in China.

Last month the Platform on Bicycle Sharing & Systems (PEBSS) – a body formed by the European Cyclists’ Federation – issued a position paper on dockless systems warning that European cities risk being "swamped" by the dockless bikes.

PEBSS’ “Common Position Paper on Unlicensed Dockless Bike Share” discussed the "disruptive innovation of app-based, un-anchored and un-licensed bike share schemes, and how that may affect Western markets as they expand aggressively.

The dockless bike share sector is facing other problems in Europe. Late last month, London’s City hall ordered Obike of Singapore to remove hundreds of dockless bikes it had “dumped” in London.

Will Norman, London’s walking and cycling commissioner, said City Hall was “furious” at the company after its bikes were “randomly strewn” across the capital.

And Wandsworth Council has started to impound oBikes that have "flooded" the borough’s streets.

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