What is Cycling’s Climate Impact ?April 21, 2022 — PBSC insights
In 2021, PBSC Urban Solutions continued to focus on bicycle sharing programs. Across Europe, Latin America and the Middle East, cities were finding ways to recover from the pandemic’s impact, as well as implement healthy habits and sustainable technologies, all while planning for the future. At the same time, with the increasing popularity of electric bikes and the growing demand for bike-sharing, the micromobility industry continued to expand rapidly.
While the industry bounced back from the unexpected challenges of the previous year, we were able to take the time to reflect, act and innovate ways to even further unify people, cities, and key players in the world of urban mobility. With advancements in multimodality, mobility hubs, solar charging and added features to our solutions, we are heading into 2022 with a new generation of our technology. Together, we made last year a success - now let’s gear up and start working towards tomorrow’s world, because it starts today.
Here’s a look back at some of the major impacts and highlights of 2021.
Bringing bike share to new cities
PBSC continued to bring bike-sharing as a solution to sustainable transportation to new cities around the world. We expanded our presence in Europe, particularly in Romania, where you will soon see our systems in the cities of Dej, Sibiu and Iași. We also launched our self-service city bikes in Clermont-Ferrand in France; North and Latin America with the cities of Quebec and Brasilia; and in the Middle East in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates.
In the cities of Clermont-Ferrand and Iași, our self-service bicycle programs are built to integrate into the cities' public transportation programs, to allow accessibility and first and last mile options for daily commuters. In addition to these deployments, we have also expanded our existing systems in several cities such as Toronto and Dubai, via the growth of their bike fleets and stations.
You can find information on our bike sharing systems and track our growth with the Meddin Bike-Sharing World Map here.
Together with our Partners, we are smashing records
This year, we counted more than 500 million trips on our PBSC bikes worldwide. A record that we owe to our systems that are becoming more and more popular every year. In fact, the Tembici systems in Brazil, àVélo in Quebec City, C.Vélo in Clermont-Ferrand, Bicing in Barcelona and BIXI in Montreal all reported record numbers in 2021 in terms of number of trips, length traveled with our bikes and new members to their programs.
BIXI, for example, wrapped up their record-smashing season with an impressive 70% increase in new members and a 74% increase in total trips over the previous year, marking what’s being called their best year ever. Then, the RTC, having just implemented their àVélo system over the past summer, already reported more than 29,000 trips on their bikes in under 4 months. Tembici saw a similar impact in Brasilia, reporting over 12,000 trips on the city’s new bikes within their first month of operations.
Meanwhile, Guadalajara's bike-sharing system, Mibici, has a record number of female-to-male users for the year 2021, exemplifying how micromobility can help provide equal accessibility.
Towards an Electric Future
Of our 500 million trips worldwide, we have recorded more than 14 million trips on our electric bikes alone. Electric, or pedal-assisted, cycling as a mode of travel has boomed in recent years and is becoming increasingly popular, as it simplifies commutes by allowing people to travel longer distances more quickly and effortlessly.
Many cities around the world are now looking to integrate electric bikes into their fleets, to offer their users a simpler and more efficient option to get around. Cities like Montreal, Monaco, Dubai, Barcelona and Valence have followed this trend and seen an immediate impact.
Innovation at the Heart of Our Ambitions
PBSC invested in a sustainable solar energy pilot project with Skyhook Solar and our partner, WE-Cycle, for their Aspen-based bike share system. The goal was to reduce their operation’s carbon emissions by providing a fully functional solar-powered recharge. The pilot station in Aspen was a success and fully solar-charged e-bike stations will soon be expanded to other cities.
This year, PBSC also developed our Multimodal Solution. An innovative and intelligent docking and charging solution that accommodates multiple, different fleets of bikes, e-bikes and electric scooters, as well as EVs. The station, built towards reliability and security, allows cities to offer various modes of transportation to users and easily manage their operations.
A Return to International Tradeshows
2021 meant reconnecting with partners and forging new relationships, as the PBSC team returned to different tradeshows and conferences across the globe, which had been halted during the pandemic. These events allow different actors in the micromobility industry to come together, share knowledge and experiences, and collaboratively develop new ways to help cities meet their sustainability and transportation objectives.
For example, we were able to attend Vélo City in Lisbon, the world cycling summit, and the NABSA Conference, a virtual conference that brings together the players of micromobility to discuss the challenges of the future of the industry.
We were also present at the Tomorrow Mobility World Congress in Barcelona, which followed COP26, a summit dedicated to smart cities and urban solutions, and Enlit Europe in Milan, to discuss the challenges, solutions, and future of Europe's energy transition. Throughout these events, our team was able to connect with journalists and other market players to share and get inspired to continuously improve our solutions and simplify transportation around the world.
Awards for Our Expertise
PBSC Urban Solutions was honored with three awards last year. The first was the Frost & Sullivan Award, an award that recognized the excellence of our systems and designated us as the market leader in bike-sharing technologies within the Latin American micromobility market. You can read about it here.
We were also recognized by Acquisition International (AI) for excellence in North American bike-sharing systems.
Finally, PBSC was chosen as Best Eco-Friendly Urban Travel System by Corporate Vision, designating our solution as the best overall ecological solution for urban mobility in 2021. An important recognition that we are proud of as we continue to strive towards promoting sustainability in all of our products and company culture. Each one of these awards simply helps underscore that we are constantly innovating and researching new and improved ways to make micromobility more sustainable, smarter and accessible to all.
Through the dedication and collaboration of our OneTeam, partners, our innovations and our global presence, we have been able to transform cities and reinvent urban transportation, for safer and smarter cities. At the end of 2021, we released our message for the future, with a simple promise: Tomorrow’s World Starts Today. Our vision is to continuously improve our micromobility solutions, for you and for cities, one city at a time.