City im­proves on its rep­u­ta­tion for bi­cy­cles

China Daily (USA) - - G20 CHINA - By SHI XIAOFENG in Hangzhou and YU RAN in Shanghai Con­tact the writ­ers at yu­ran@chi­nadaily.com.cn

Get­ting ready to wel­come for­eign vis­i­tors to the G20 Leaders Sum­mit in Septem­ber, Hangzhou, cap­i­tal of Zhe­jiang prov­ince, is up­dat­ing its public bi­cy­cle rental fa­cil­i­ties with im­proved func­tions and more thought­ful ser­vices.

A to­tal of 2,500 bi­cy­cles em­bla­zoned with the G20 logo have been put into ser­vice since July 8 at ser­vice points around the city.

Cer­tain parts have been im­proved for safety and con­ve­nience. For ex­am­ple, park­ing brack­ets are made of stain­less steel to be rust­proof for long-term use. Ev­ery key for its match­ing bi­cy­cle has its own printed code, which is also stored in an on­line data­base. An ex­tra re­flec­tor has been in­stalled at the back of the bike sad­dle to en­hance safety dur­ing night rid­ing.

“More up­dated bi­cy­cles pro­vid­ing a safer and more com­fort­able cy­cling ex­pe­ri­ence will ap­pear on the streets ahead of the G20 sum­mit, while the old bas­kets will be re­placed with new ones made of alu­minum,” said Wu Guox­iong, deputy man­ager of Hangzhou Public Bi­cy­cle Trans­porta­tion and Ser­vice De­vel­op­ment Co.

To pro­vide in­ter­na­tion­al­level ser­vice dur­ing the sum­mit, the com­pany is work­ing hard to make im­prove­ments.

Dur­ing the sum­mit, the com­pany will in­tro­duce a spe­cially de­signed rental card with Hangzhou’s cul­tural and scenery el­e­ments that will en­able for­eign guests to ride bi­cy­cles around the city. An au­dio sys­tem in English will be avail­able at some ser­vice points to help for­eign­ers rent and re­turn bi­cy­cles. The hot­line of the public bi­cy­cle ser­vice will also be able to an­swer phone calls in English.

em­bla­zoned with the G20 logo have been put into ser­vice since July 8.

A to­tal of 370 public bi­cy­cle ser­vice points within the ma­jor road sys­tem where ho­tels and meet­ing venues are lo­cated will be equipped with bilin­gual no­tices.

Staff mem­bers of the com­pany have par­tic­i­pated in 12 types of train­ing, in­clud­ing English lessons, with an av­er­age of three times per per­son. They also have re­ceived a small hand­book of 100 com­mon English sen­tences, as well as cards list­ing the man­age­ment stan­dards for the G20 sum­mit public bi­cy­cle ser­vice points.

Since the city’s public bi­cy­cle trans­porta­tion ser­vice sys­tem began trial op­er­a­tions in May 2008, a to­tal of 84,100 bi­cy­cles have been rented 665 mil­lion times. In 2015, public bi­cy­cles were rented over 310,000 times in av­er­age ev­ery day.

The public bi­cy­cle in Hangzhou has be­come an es­sen­tial part of daily life for lo­cal res­i­dents.

“I have a car, but I still rent and ride a bi­cy­cle from the ser­vice point close to my home to the sub­way sta­tion at least three­days per­week, as itavoids traf­fic jams,” said Yang Yi, a city govern­ment worker.

She added that many lo­cals use the public bi­cy­cles in the down­town area and drive cars only for long-dis­tance trips.

The con­cept of public bi­cy­cles spread from Hangzhou to 30 prov­inces and 175 cities na­tion­wide, in­clud­ing Taiyuan, Shanxi prov­ince and Tacheng in theXin­jiang Uygur au­ton­o­mous re­gion.

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