KIRO NIGHTS

Stine: Seattle’s newest bikeshare little more than ‘a hideous eyesore’

Dec 14, 2021, 8:36 AM | Updated: 9:59 am
Seattle bikeshare, Veo...
Veo arrives in Seattle in 2022. (Courtesy photo)
(Courtesy photo)

Taken from Monday’s edition of KIRO Nights.

Seattle’s newest bikeshare provider is expected to hit the streets in 2022, and while I get that everybody likes these programs, I have my reservations.

Seattle bikeshare history 101

I understand that these have been popular in the past. The newest one that’s coming to Seattle is called Veo, and it touts itself as the “first profitable micro-mobility company.” It’s been approved by the Seattle Department of Transportation as the city’s newest bikeshare provider.

Now, I’m going to use some choice language here, because eventually we’re going to have 1,500 of these bikes spread across the Seattle area, starting with around 500 as they begin to ramp up. I think that these bikes are hideous. I think they’re ugly. They tried them in Santa Cruz. They tried them in Austin. They tried them in San Francisco. They tried them in Los Angeles. They are ugly, they are often graffitied on, and they are often misused.

It’s basically like the city has a disease that won’t stop spreading. It is a hideous eyesore to have these car-alternative transportation options. People get injured on them. They’re also costly. I don’t see the benefit of them.

I’m also torn, because on the flip side of this is that we have responsible micro-transportation, car-alternative people who actually like to use these things. And this is a circumstance where it brings back one of my favorite sayings: One person will ruin it for everybody else. You watch when somebody commits a crime on one of these, you watch when somebody assaults somebody else with one of these — it’s bound to happen — that’s why I’m of two minds about it.

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Stine: Seattle’s newest bikeshare little more than ‘a hideous eyesore’