PBSC Urban Solutions
|Founded||2008[a] in Montreal, Quebec, Canada|
|Founder||Société en commandite Stationnement de Montréal (SCSM)|
|Luc Sabbatini (CEO)|
|Brands||Iconic, Boost, Fit, E-Fit|
|Footnotes / references|
PBSC Urban Solutions, formerly the Public Bike System Company, is a bicycle-sharing system equipment vendor based in Longueuil, Quebec. The company develops bicycle-sharing systems, equipment, parts, and software, and sells its products to cities in Australia, Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and seven other countries. The company has sold about 90,000 bikes and 7,000 stations to 32 cities.
Public Bike System Company (PBSC) was initially created by the City of Montreal to supply and operate its public bike share system under the brand Bixi (later becoming Bixi Montréal), which was introduced in 2009. The name 'Bixi' is a portmanteau of 'bicycle' and 'taxi'. Starting in 2010, PBSC began to export the Bixi brand of bike-share systems to various other cities.
In 2013, PBSC began having financial problems; the company filed for bankruptcy in early 2014. Bruno Rodi purchased the international division in April 2014 and renamed the company to PBSC Urban Solutions. (Montreal's on-the-ground Bixi bike-share operations were not included in the sale, and were reorganized under the Bixi Montréal name.) In 2015, he sold the majority share to Luc Sabbatini, who became CEO. Since then, PBSC Urban Solutions has extended its activity into additional cities.
In 2007, the city of Montreal published the "Reinvent Montreal" transportation plan, which featured a bike sharing system as a method of reducing automobile dependence. To design and operate the new system, the city created the Public Bike System Company (PBSC). This was a private non-profit company overseen by Stationnement de Montréal (the Montreal parking authority).
After the 2008 implementation of the system in Montreal, Bixi began expanding around the world. Bixi systems are now found across North America. Bixi equipment is used in several bike-sharing systems in North America, most of which are operated by Motivate.
In May 2009, the system began operation in Montreal, with 3000 bicycles and 300 stations.
From June to September 2009, the system was introduced in a pilot study in Ottawa/Gatineau. This was followed by operations in Melbourne, Australia from May 2010, Minneapolis (MN), in June 2010, and London in July 2010. Bixi launched on the Washington State University campus in August 2010, in Washington, D.C. & Arlington under the name "Capital Bikeshare" in September 2010, and in Boston under the name "Hubway" in July 2011.
On January 20, 2014, the company filed for bankruptcy in Montreal, citing $46 million in debt. Part of the issue in the bankruptcy was that Chicago and New York were withholding $5 million in payments because of software issues with the docking stations. Over the course of 2014, Bruno Rodi purchased the international division of Bixi and renamed it to PBSC Urban Solutions. Luc Sabbatini became CEO of the company in January 2015.
- 8D Technologies developed the technological platform behind the Bixi system, including the wireless bike station terminals, the RFID bike dock technology and the software systems. The system runs on a combination of solar energy and grid charged batteries. 8D also created the Spotcycle bike-share smartphone app that locates and shows the status of bike stations close to the users.
- Michel Dallaire designed the physical components.
- Robotics Design designed the bike docks and the locking system.
- Cycles Devinci manufactures Bixi bikes in the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean region of Quebec.
- Michel Gourdeau suggested the name Bixi, a portmanteau of bicycle and taxi, which was selected by a majority of the people who participated in a contest organized by the city of Montreal.
The cities that currently use PBSC bike-share systems are listed below: 
|City||Country||Launch date||System name||Stations||Bikes|
|Aruba||Aruba||2017||Green Bike Aruba||8||100|
|Aspen/Basalt, Colorado||United States||2013||WE-cycle||25||220|
|Boston, Massachusetts||United States||2011||Bluebikes||158||1461|
|Chattanooga, Tennessee||United States||2012||Bike Chattanooga||39||408|
|Chicago, Illinois||United States||2013||Divvy||619||6387|
|Columbus, Ohio||United States||2013||CoGo||70||614|
|Detroit, Michigan||United States||2017||MoGo||75||621|
|Dubai||United Arab Emirates||2020||Careem Bike||80||800|
|Honolulu, Hawaii||United States||2017||Biki||136||1288|
|Kona, Hawaii||United States||2016||Hawaii Island Bikeshare||11||104|
|London||United Kingdom||2010||Santander Cycles||839||13850|
|Louisville, Kentucky||United States||2017||LouVelo||39||322|
|Minneapolis, Minnesota||United States||2010||Nice Ride Minnesota||171||1833|
|Montreal, Quebec||Canada||2009||Bixi Montréal||597||7340|
|New York, New York||United States||2013||Citi Bike||458||7000|
|Porto Alegre||Brazil||2018||Bike Itaú||41||410|
|Rio de Janeiro||Brazil||2018||Bike Itaú||260||2600|
|São Paulo||Brazil||2018||Bike Itaú||260||2600|
|Toronto, Ontario||Canada||2011||Bike Share Toronto||466||5006|
|Tucson, Arizona||United States||2017||Tugo||36||330|
|Vila Velha||Brazil||2018||Bike VV||20||200|
|Washington, D.C.||United States||2010||Capital BikeShare||395||5932|
|Stony Brook University, New York||United States||2013||Wolf Ride||8||63|
A complete station is made up of a payment kiosk, bikes, and bike docks (where the bikes are locked). A station can be installed and configured in about half an hour; no excavation is required beforehand. Ordinary stations use solar power during the day and a rechargeable battery at night. Stations which can charge e-bikes, however, must be connected to an electrical power source.
Bike docks hold and lock the bikes when they are not in use. Each dock includes a button which can be used to notify staff if a bicycle is defective.
PBSC's payment kiosks are touchscreen-operated; most of them accept credit cards for short-term rentals. Users can unlock bikes using a numeric one-time PIN number generated by the payment kiosk or an app. Long-term subscribers also have the option to unlock a bike using a subscriber key, which works using contactless RFID ("tap") technology.
The bicycles are utility bicycles; they have a unisex step-through frame with an upright seating position. They are equipped with grip-shifter-operated internally-geared hubs, drum brakes, mudguards/fenders, chain guard, generator lights, and a front rack. PBSC sells both 3-speed and 7-speed hub gears.
The one-piece aluminum frame and handlebars conceal cables and fasteners, in an effort to protect them from vandalism and inclement weather. The tires are designed to be puncture-resistant and are filled with nitrogen to maintain proper inflation pressure longer. Twin LED rear lights are integrated into the robust frame, which weighs approximately 18 kg. The bikes were designed by Michel Dallaire; they are built in the Saguenay, Quebec region by Cycles Devinci.
Four bike models are available. These include:
- The "Iconic". This is PBSC's original bike model. It has 26" wheels, and is heavy but sturdy.
- The "Fit". This is a newer model. It is lighter-weight and has 24" wheels.
- The "Boost". This is PBSC's original e-bike. The battery lasts for up to 60 km between charges.
- The "E-Fit". This is a newer e-bike. The battery lasts for up to 70 km between charges.
The "Boost" and the "E-Fit" each include a 250 watt motor.
PBSC mobile app
The official PBSC bicycle-rental app is now called "PBSC"; it was formerly called "CycleFinder". It can be used to unlock bikes, find nearby stations, find available bikes or empty docks, find a route to a destination, and more.
In January 2014, Bixi filed for bankruptcy in Montreal, citing $46 million in debt. Part of the issue in the bankruptcy was that Chicago and New York were withholding $5 million in payments because of software issues with the docking stations. In February 2014, the city of Montreal bought all Bixi assets, with the intention of selling the international division of the bankrupt company. On April 9, 2014, Bruno Rodi, a Quebec businessman, bought Bixi's international division for $4 million and renamed it PBSC Urban Solutions.
Several cities experienced hurdles in implementing Bixi systems.
A trial implementation in Ottawa and Gatineau took place in the summer of 2009, with 50 bikes and four stations available until September 2009. While the trial was successful, they did not return in 2010 since no company wanted to manage the project as the National Capital Commission wanted the contractor to buy the bicycles and locking stations. The project was revived, however, and 100 bikes and 10 stations were launched in spring 2011.
Bixi's franchise in central Boston includes the right to negotiate to expand the system to neighboring municipalities. Central Boston will be served by a network that includes 2,500 bikes, and 290 stations with 3,750 docking spaces, with the potential to expand to a 5,000-bike system. The system was delayed, partly because of a lack of funding, but launched in Spring 2011 with 610 bikes and 61 stations. It has since grown into the neighboring communities of Brookline, Cambridge and Somerville. They had initially planned to set up a Bixi system directly, but now are using Alta Bicycle Share, of Portland, Oregon, to set it up. Alta Bicycle Share uses the same bicycles and stations that are used in Bixi through the Public Bike System Company.
The Bixi system in Montreal experienced some initial difficulties less than two months after its introduction in 2009, with damage and vandalism to some of the bikes. The newspaper La Presse reported on July 5, 2009 that one in five bikes had been damaged and 15% of bike racks are defective. Stationnement de Montréal communications director Michel Philibert stated the organization plans to reinforce racks and is testing prototype designs. Designer Michel Dallaire stated it never occurred to him that people would try to break the stations to steal bikes.  There have since been no significant damage or vandalism issues reported in any of the installations of Bixi.
In 2012 a legal dispute over software from 8D Technologies led to implementation delays for Chattanooga, New York and San Francisco.
In 2013 it was reported that the Toronto Bixi system was facing financial troubles and would be operated by Toronto Parking Authority in 2014 under a different name. The system had only paid back $600,000 of its $4,500,000 start up loan. The unexpectedly rapid expansion of export business created cash flow problems for the parent company, PBSC Urban Solutions, which attempted to sell its international operations in June.
- a greater likelihood of cycling for those exposed to the public bicycle-share program after the second season of implementation (odds ratio = 2.86; 95% confidence interval = 1.85, 4.42) after we controlled for weather, built environment, and individual variables.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to PBSC.|
- Alternatives to the automobile
- Sustainable transport
- Electric bicycle
- Road cycling
- List of cycling topics
- Bicycle sharing system
- Outline of cycling
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