Published : Monday, August 20, 2018 | 5:02 AM
Metro said it will start removing its Bike Share docking stations in Pasadena today, after the City last month asked the countywide transportation utility to terminate the Pasadena Bike Share program.
Metro started removing the bikes from the docking stations last Thursday and Friday, and will be removing all of the stations over the next two weeks.
Today, the Bike Share docking station at the intersection of Colorado Blvd. and North Hill Avenue near Pasadena City College will be first to go, followed by Caltech’s East and West station.
The City cited unanticipated costs, low fare box delivery, and the lack of title sponsorships as some of the reasons for deciding to end the program.
Transportation Director Frederick Dock said the City was also looking at alternative bike share programs – including dockless systems – that would not be too costly to operate and will not be a drain in the pocket of bike riders.
An advisory from the City Manager Steve Mermell’s office indicated the City is entertaining the thought of entering into a relationship with a dockless bike share operation, and is actually drafting regulations for managing such a system that is now in use in some U.S. cities.
The City decided to pull out of the county’s Bike Share program on July 11 after the Department of Transportation found itself pouring about $98,000 per month into the program to cover costs.
Pasadena launched the program in July last year. The City had to pay Metro $468, 411 from its Measure R funds that month to cover initial operation and maintenance costs before the bike stations were actually installed.
The program enjoyed a high of 10,764 rides last September, and since then suffered a rapid and steady decline. Last December, it had 3,826 rides.
Metro had projected a 60 percent farebox revenue return by the City, which could have meant $1,729,094 in revenue to the City in the first two years of operations. From August of 2017 to April of 2018, however, farebox revenue dipped from 10 percent of costs to a mere 5.5 percent of costs.
By last month, the Bike Share program’s costs had began to threaten the viability of the City’s entire transportation budget, so it decided to pull the plug on Pasadena’s participation.
As of Sunday, an updated map of Bike Share docking stations in Los Angeles County no longer includes any Pasadena location, Metro’s website showed.
The removals will continue on Tuesday, when docking stations at Lake Avenue and California Blvd. and at Cordova Street and Lake will be removed. On Wednesday, stations at Lake and Merrett Drive and at Villa Parke will go.
On Thursday, Metro will remove the stations at Madison Avenue and Colorado, Madison and Walnut Street, Los Robles Blvd. and Cordova, and Oakland Avenue and Union Street.
On Friday, stations at Fair Oaks Avenue and Peoria Street, Fair Oaks and Hammond Street, City Hall West and Pasadena Central Library will be removed.
On Monday, August 27, those near the Pasadena Convention Center, Del Mar Metro Station, Arroyo Parkway and Bellevue Drive will be removed.
Those at Memorial Park Station, Old Pasadena, Fair Oaks and Mercantile Alley and Pasadena Avenue and Dayton Street will be removed on Tuesday, August 28.
On Wednesday, August 29, stations at the Pasadena Museum and at the Rose Bowl will be removed.