[TheThinkTank] Successful Yellow Bike Programs?

Taylor Powell taylorpow at gmail.com
Sat Feb 23 15:04:22 PST 2008

The Yellow Bike Project is a major yellow bike give-a-way-er and  
community bike shop in Austin, Texas. To date they have given away  
over a few hundred bikes, with mixed results. They still release a  
lot of yellow bikes on particular dates, but they realize how these  
bikes *usually* get used:

Q: Why do I never see Yellow Bikes on the street?
A: Truth-be-told many of the Yellow Bikes that we release end up  
being taken by and individual as a private bike. Although this is  
opposite of our stated purpose of releasing community bikes to ride  
but not to own, we realize that those willing to ride a bike hand  
painted yellow are very much in need. If you look closely around town  
many of the Yellow Bikes end up painted gray or some other color to  
mask the yellow paint job that we give. Our ultimate intent is to  
make bicycle transportation available to all and especially those in  
need, so seeing a gray bike in use still brings a smile to our faces.

from their own website: http://www.austinyellowbike.org/projects.htm

Just down the highway, in San Marcos, Texas, we decided not to pursue  
a similar system when starting The Bike Cave (www.thebikecave.org)  
because we feel that personal ownership (all our working, 'resell'  
bikes are $30-$100 suggested donation, no matter how low or high end)  
tends to lead to more ridership - thus our ultimate goal.

So the yellow bike concept does still exist, but has its advantages  
and disadvantages...

just my 2cents,

On Feb 23, 2008, at 2:59 PM, CLINTON BIGGS wrote:

> I was run over by a guy on a "yellow bike" which was green in  
> Boulder colorado.  It seems to me that the benefit of riding a bike  
> has to be coupled to the responsibility of caring for it. I would  
> think perhaps a program where area establishments had loaner bikes  
> could work. If a, oh lets say zine library so I don't immediately   
> give in to corporate convenience, had a location by a park and   
> could loan out bikes  so people could go for a spin in the park,  
> read some zines, and come back.  Then the library could have  
> increased  visitation.   Hey, a library  might be a neat place to  
> keep a   community shared bike  and everyone could have access  
> until its stolen or liberated by radical forces or whatever.    
> Peace Art
> Date: Sat, 23 Feb 2008 11:00:48 -0700
> From: jonathan at slcbikecollective.org
> To: thethinktank at bikecollectives.org
> Subject: [TheThinkTank] Successful Yellow Bike Programs?
> Do they exist?  I haven't heard of one that lasted.  I am curious  
> because I was reading about the Blue Bike Program
> http://www.railtrails.org/whatwedo/partnerships/corporate/ 
> DasaniBlueBikes.html
> -- 
> Sincerely,
> Jonathan Morrison
> Executive Director
> Salt Lake City Bicycle Collective
> 2312 S. West Temple
> Salt Lake City, UT 84115
> w: 801-328-2453
> c: 801-688-0183
> f: 801-466-3856
> www.slcbikecollective.org
> Get Addicted to Crank!
> http://www.slcbikecollective.org/crank/
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