MONTREAL UNVEILS BIKE SHARE

SUNDAY,SEPTEMBER 21-2008

The city joins Paris, Barcelona, and Lyon with the installation of its own public bike system, named Bixi, making 2,400 bicycles available to the public at more than 300 locations across six Montreal boroughs.

Starting next spring, residents will be able to borrow bicycles from one station and drop them off at another.

"You grab it, you ride it, you bring it back," Montreal's mayor Gerald Tremblay told The Canadian Press. "It will become an emblem for Montreal."

Bixi may be a more health-friendly means of transportation, but it's also environmentally friendly. The bikes, which were made in Quebec, are composed entirely of recycled aluminum and the parking stations run on solar power.

The entire operation cost $15 million and was paid for by Stationnement de Montreal, a company that manages the city's on-street parking.
The organization hopes that membership fees will pay for the programs start-up and operating costs.

Memberships will cost $78 per year, $28 per month, or $5 for a single day. The bicycles are also available to be borrowed for one half-hour at a time for free.

Organizers say the system will be in service for the majority of the year, but will be out of operation during the harshest winter months.

The name Bixi, a combination of the words 'bicycle' and 'taxi,' was chosen for the system as part of a citywide contest in which residents voted on almost 9,000 different names. . . . . . . . .FINALLY . . .SOME....PROGRESS..IN THE BATTLE TO SAVE THE ENVIRONMENT . . .HAPPY ...CAR . .FREE...DAY...MONTREAL

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