SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) — The City is getting ready to make some changes to its bike-sharing program.
Starting Tuesday, the City will remove 15 DecoBike bike stations across the city.
Some say bike-sharing on the boardwalk is great, while others disagree.
"I think they are awesome," said Jim Luers who lives in Pacific Beach seasonally. "I've used them in Chicago and I've used them in Washington D.C."
Not everyone thinks they are awesome.
"It takes away space view corridors," said Brian Curry, past chairman of the Pacific Beach Planning Group.
There are also concerns about bike rental shops and prime real estate.
Brian Hess of WestOne Rentals said he thinks he'll get more business with with the bikes stations gone and DecoBike having their rentals on the boardwalk is unfair.
"I would love to have the boardwalk space to have these bikes on the boardwalk," said Hess. "We would kill it."
In partnership with the City and its climate action plan, DecoBike rolled out in the fall of 2013 saying it invested $8-million, signed a 10-year-agreement with the City and eventually would launch 180 stations with 1800 bikes. They also planned to share revenues with the city.
"This is not a commute spot," said Hess. "This isn't some place where they are going to go to the bus terminal to a bike to another bus terminal."
For four years the Pacific Beach Planning Board – including past president Curry and others - gathered 3,000 signatures and lobbied the City to put the brakes on DecoBike on beach boardwalks.
"If the locations had been at bus stops or at trolley stops, neighborhood grocery stores, that kind of thing we understood - and that is what we understood we were going to have when we invited them into the neighborhood," said Curry
The City didn't explain why, but sent an email Friday to community planning groups alerting them that starting Tuesday 15 DecoBike stations would be removed. [See below for email.]
The City is removing DecoBike stations from P.B., Mission Beach, Ocean Beach boardwalk areas, Mission Bay and the Embarcadero.
"We are so happy the City finally saw the light, heard the community and decided to remove them from those areas," said Curry.
The DecoBike vice president of operations, David Silverman, referred News 8 to the City when asked to comment.
The City didn't elaborate but in its e-mail it said it would work with Downtown, Uptown, North Park and Balboa Park community groups on expanding bike share stations.
Below is the full email sent by the City in regards to the removal of the bike stations:
The City, per discussions with DecoBike, will focus on expanding the bike station locations by increasing the use of bike share for transit connectivity and short trips, which continues to support the City’s Climate Action Plan efforts and mobility hub plans. As a result, the City is proposing new locations in the urban core areas which will be presented to the appropriate Community Planning Groups.
The City will present the locations for public input to Downtown Community Planning Council, Uptown Planners, Uptown Public Facilities Subcommittee, North Park Planning Committee, North Park Public Facilities & Transportation Subcommittee and Balboa Park Committee targeting the upcoming publicly noticed September and/or October meetings.
Based on this current focus, DecoBike will remove and relocate the bike stations listed below to the urban locations through the above mentioned City community outreach process. The removal of the stations will begin on Tuesday, September 5 and conclude the week of September 11.
Station # Station Location
13 4198 Mission Bay Dr (Mission Bay Boat Ramp)
52 1492 N Harbor Dr (W Ash St & N Harbor Dr)
68 1899 N Harbor Dr (W Grape St and N Harbor Dr)
92 4500 Ocean Blvd (PB Boardwalk)
103 780 Thomas Ave (Thomas Ave & Mission Blvd)
104 700 Grand Ave (PB Lifeguard Station)
105 760 Pacific Beach Dr (P.B. Dr & Mission Blvd)
108 1005 W Mission Bay Dr (Bonita Cove Park)
110 1098 W Mission Bay Dr (Ventura Cove Park)
111 Dana Landing Rd & W Mission Bay Dr
112 5800 Newport Ave (Newport Ave & Abbott Ave)
115 2100 Spray St (Spray St & Brighton Ave)
118 2727 De Anza Rd (N Mission Bay Dr & De Anza Rd)
131 2576 Laning Rd (USS Recruit, Liberty Station)
187 1240 East Mission Bay Dr (Fiesta Island Park)