Beginning this Saturday, the NDMC (New Delhi Municipal Corporation) will be offering 225 SmartBikes to traverse the city in style- while preserving the environment. The bikes will be available for rent from 23 bicycle stations in the city and one can easily cover short distances in central Delhi.
Initially, the SmartBike stations will be located within a 5 km radius of the commercial center of Delhi in locations such as Connaught Place, Janpath, Delhi High Court, Akashvani Bhavan and LIC Building. The plan is to expand to 50 bike stations and over 500 SmartBikes all across the city by January 2019. Each of the stations will be placed about 500 metres apart to help in case of an emergency.
The aim is to connect the entire 46 km sq NDMC area by the end of this programme. A benefit of the SmartBikes is that it encourages people to save the environment, to take on a healthy lifestyle and eventually decongest the intra city roads of Delhi. Eventually, the government aims to expand the programme to Chennai on an even larger scale.
According to officials, the bikes’ components have been imported from Germany and will be assembled here in India. They possess advanced technologies such as automatic LED head lamps and rear lamps, GPS tracking, GSM capability and WPAN (wireless personal area network), a QR code based system for unlocking the bike from it’s station and a continuous connection to the main server.
The bicycles can be connected to via an app. The app is used for registration on to the programme for a mere ₹1. At commencement, the bike stations will be manned by experts who will guide users through the process of using the stations and the three geared bikes. Eventually, the plan is to make it a completely unmanned, seamless network.