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Bicycle rental and mobility in São Paulo

28/05/2014 17h30 - Atualizado em 28/05/2014 17h38

The bicycle rental system BikeSampa, sponsored by bank Itaú, works in São Paulo since 2012. In December 2013, the Bradesco bank also launched their own system, Ciclo Sampa. Together, they totalize over 150 locations for borrowing bicycles around the city. It is a start, but not even close to the ideal.

BikeSampa and Ciclo Sampa are two distinct systems that operate practically in the same region without any interactions between them. Even if the initiative is good, we wonder just how much the service aims to improve the situation of mobility in the city, and how much of it is just a marketing strategy by the sponsors.

In her article to the Folha de S. Paulo site, the columnist Raquel Rolnik points out precisely this situation. The locations chosen by the systems shows no relation to the actual proportion of bicycle users – in neighborhoods like Vila Maria and Jaçanã, for example, there are no borrowing points.

São Paulo has only 63 km in bike lanes, other than 3,3 km in smaller lanes and 120 km special lanes for lounge, signalized during Sundays and holidays. The city hall promises to reach 200 km in bike lanes by the end of the year, and while all the help to this cause is welcomed, we shouldn’t be depending on marketing business.