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Welcome to the PBSC City Series, our original content covering different cities around the world that partner with us for their shared micromobility needs. Join us as we deep dive into how our technology and innovation has empowered the success of their bike-sharing systems.
Biking in Dubai : The City Invests in Smart and Sustainable Urban Mobility
Have you tried biking in Dubai? With 3.38 million people, Dubai is a modern, connected smart city in the United Arab Emirates. This great city has impressive infrastructures that continue to grow at a rapid pace.
PBSC, in partnership with Careem, launched a massive new electric bike-share solution in February 2020. This program gave the ultra-modern desert metropolis another claim to fame: the first large-scale bike-share system in the Middle East.
PBSC developed this customized, sustainable urban bike-share solution to perfectly respond to the requirements of Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA). More than a year later, the Careem BIKE system is quite the success, with more than 800,000 rides taken!
The Challenges of Establishing a Bike-Sharing System in Dubai
Establishing biking in Dubai wasn’t as easy as it seemed. We had to consider the extreme desert heat and winds, particularly during the summer season. These factors, as well as Dubai’s climate and mobility infrastructure, meant that developing an urban bike-share solution demanded extra special consideration.
For example, the RTA’s micromobility vision includes building a network of dedicated cycling lanes. In this city that is passionate about its car culture, such a project helps make bike-share an idea to embrace.
Choosing the right e-bike for Dubai’s climate and infrastructure was key. PBSC’s E-FIT (a fleet of 800 E-FITS, to be exact) is an electric pedal-assist bike. Cyclists expend less energy to pedal; the motor does the work. It is an undeniable advantage, and needless to say, delightful for biking in the desert heat. PBSC’s multifunctional smart stations are equally innovative, charging up e-bikes directly at the docking point while securing the E-FITs and having a structured and organized network.
When it was time to launch the system in order to develop biking in Dubai, 80 smart stations were implemented throughout Dubai in just two weeks, a fast and efficient rollout that enabled 800 E-FIT to be deployed and available for use as of the system’s very first day. A whirlwind of precision, this immense operation was masterfully managed in collaboration with Careem BIKE.
The system was immediately popular; with +800,000 rides and peaks of up to 5 rides per bike a day, impressive numbers for the system’s very first year of operations.
Biking in Dubai: A Collaborative Success
Another secret to its success was integrating PBSC’s technology into Careem’s multi-purpose solution. By interfacing PBSC’s system with Careem’s database, the bike-sharing service became instantly available to a very wide audience, as illustrated by its diverse user profiles.
Careem BIKE users are extremely varied, with occasional users, and its solid base of regulars keeps steadily growing. The system is available through the dedicated Careem BIKE app that PBSC has developed to maintain a smooth user experience to biking in Dubai.
PBSC is proud to be associated with Careem, recipient of the Sustainability Company of the Year at the 2020 Gulf Business Awards and to share in the happiness of Dubai’s electric urban bike-share solution—one that seems well on its way to achieving its projections of 3500 bikes and 350 smart stations!
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