NKDA decides to introduce Bicycle Sharing Scheme
Kolkata: The New Town Kolkata Development Authority (NKDA) has decided to introduce Bicycle Sharing Scheme to provide better last mile connectivity. Users will be able to access and use bicycles from any place where any such bicycles are found parked within the periphery of NKDA and will be free to leave it at any public place within the periphery of New Town. The cycles will have an automatic locking system so chances of theft will be minimum. The users will have to pay charge to the service provider for the bicycle.
A senior NKDA official said that the scheme would be implemented by any private partner qualifying through a transparent process.
"The Expression Of Interest (EOI) for the scheme has already been floated. "We would prefer cycles with a dockless model that are
GPS enabled We will only charge a minor parking fee for using any designated car parking lots," NKDA chairman Debashis Sen said.
A reasonable length of grade separated exclusive bicycle track have already been built in Action Area I (From East Enclave/Box Bridge to Eastern Highs/ Bus Terminus) and Eco Park from Gate 1 to 4 after a study was conducted by IIT Kharagpur.
NKDA will arrange vacant public spaces at different locations to park bicycles and no space will be allowed for making any structure whether permanent or temporary. The arrangement will generally be for five years.
The service provider will arrange the required number of bicycles, manpower and other technological support to run the scheme, establish an office in its own expense in New Town and will have app-based booking system.
The state Transport department has already introduced bike taxis in New Town for last mile connectivity and it has evoked a very good response.
"New Town is a model green city in the making. We have been encouraging cycling for covering short distances. Various events in New Town and Sector 5 have been held in association with cycle federation of India and others - the latest being Corporate Cycling Competition at Sector 5. Battery operated golf carts and e-scooters/three-wheelers are also encouraged," the official said adding that Bengaluru has already introduced the sharing scheme.