SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) – The debate over dockless bicycles has pedaled its way into Ocean Beach.
The app-based bike-sharing services are popular with tourists, but they are not catching on with locals who are upset with bikes and scooters being abandoned throughout their neighborhoods.
Bird-Electric Scooters, ofo bikes, The Yellow Bicycles and LimeBike are all bike share programs that were approved by the city, and allows riders to drop them off in non-designated area.
Locals told News 8 the bikes, which users can rent via an app, are invading their neighborhoods.
Linda Lawrence supports the bike program and regulation. “People didn't want the automobile riding up their horse path and the automobile was eventually regulated. I am sure we are going to work this out,” she said.
During the Ocean Beach Planning Board Meeting Wednesday night, ofo and Bird talked about how its programs offer an alternative transportation and shot down the idea of having dedicated drop-offs.
“What we really want to do is get more people on bikes,” said Anna Wan Christie, general manager for ofo San Diego.
Still, opponents said the bikes are being left in the middle of sidewalks, yards and in front of bike rental shops.
The planning board approved sending a letter requesting the City of San Diego to put together a timeline on how it will regulate dockless bike companies.
A spokesperson said Limebike was not able to attend Wednesday night because of a scheduling conflict, but did ask to speak at next month’s meeting.
In a statement that echoes ofo and Bird, LimeBike said they want to work with stakeholders to design and customize a bike share program that works best for the community.
After public outcry, last year the city removed DecoBike kiosks from beach communities. DecoBike was taken over by Discover.