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Ho Chi Minh City mulls over separate lanes for public bicycles

Ho Chi Minh City mulls over separate lanes for public bicycles

Friday, April 07, 2023, 17:18 GMT+7
Ho Chi Minh City mulls over separate lanes for public bicycles
Public bikes available for rent in downtown Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Thu Dung / Tuoi Tre

Ho Chi Minh City is studying the pilot of separate lanes for public bicycles on some roads on which residents have a high demand for using the vehicles, said a local official.

The municipal Department of Transport on Thursday coordinated with the Consulate General of the Netherlands in Ho Chi Minh City organized a training course on the development and operation of the public bike rental service.

The service was launched to diversify public transport means, Ha Le An, deputy director of the Ho Chi Minh City Management Center of Public Transport, said at the event.

The use of public bicycles helps protect the environment and improve health.

The service, connected to bus and metro systems, also contributes to developing public transport and reducing private vehicles, An added.

Ho Chi Minh City currently has 43 public bike rental stations with some 500 bikes in the downtown area.

After 15 months, more than 305,000 users have registered for the public bicycle rental service with 80 percent of them having used the service.

There have been over 473,000 trips covering a total distance of some 2.1 million kilometers or an average of 1,100 trips totaling 5,120 kilometers per day.

Users of the public bike rental service have helped reduce 183,000 kilograms of carbon dioxide compared with traveling by personal vehicles, such as cars or motorbikes.

Such cycling frequency helps burn off some 2.4 million calories per week, thus improving health.

“Ho Chi Minh City will expand the service to other districts and survey trade centers, schools, and apartment buildings to add more public bike rental stations,” An said.

The city will also arrange parking lots for residents’ bicycles.

Ho Chi Minh City is the first locality in Vietnam to launch the public bike rental service, which later spreads to Vung Tau City in southern Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province, Quy Nhon City in south-central Binh Dinh Province, Hai Duong City in the namesake northern province, and Hanoi, Hai Phong, and Da Nang Cities.

The Ho Chi Minh City Department of Transport inaugurated the public bike rental service in downtown District 1 on December 16, 2021, putting 500 bicycles into operation at 43 stations.

The cost to rent one bicycle is based on service use time, such as VND5,000 (US$0.21) per 30 minutes.

Customers must download the TNGO app on their smartphones to identify the nearest point where bicycles are available for rent.

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Thanh Ha - Thu Dung / Tuoi Tre News

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