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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Bixi Toronto Inches Closer to Reality - Torontoist

"We're pretty confident we'll get there,' Egan said.

As for that other launch target: last Friday the membership pledge count was at 800, according to Bixi Toronto's Facebook page. Each yearlong membership pledge costs $95 up front ($107.35, after tax), and is refundable if Bixi falls short of its launch goals and doesn't materialize. Other cities that use PBSC bikes and stations charge between $50 and $78 annually, making Bixi Toronto slightly expensive by comparison. But supporters point out that, since Bixi Toronto would be available year round, it would actually be cheaper, per month, than the Montreal version, which at $78 per year is only available from May until November.

The City of Toronto has devoted a few staffers to the rollout push. Aside from City managers like Egan, who were instrumental in negotiating with PBSC and selling the plan to City Council, there are also junior staff members who have been busy marketing Bixi to the public. They've been out on Toronto's streets for the past few months, lugging an itinerant Bixi demonstration station to street fairs and the like, so that passers-by can learn about the system and try out the bikes."