The Hsinchu City Government yesterday said that it is scheduled to launch the first phase of a public bicycle rental service by June, starting with 10 automated rental stations near schools, public transportation stations and historical sites.
Hsinchu Mayor Lin Chih-chien (林智堅) and King Liu (劉金標), the founder and chairman of Giant Manufacturing Co, which operates the YouBike system, signed an agreement on Thursday last week to start the project.
Lin said that the city council has allocated NT$60 million (US$1.8 million) to install the public bike rental system by the end of this year.
The first stage of the project is expected to see rental facilities opened at the Hsinchu Railway Station, Hsinchu East Gate and Hsinchu City God Temple, a city government official said, adding that by the end of this year, there would be 750 bicycles available at 30 rental stations across the city.
Giant’s Liu said that he thinks visitors would welcome the opportunity to cycle around the city, which is not only a healthy activity, but also helps reduce carbon emissions.
Bike rentals are slated to be free for the first three months after the system is launched, according to the city government.
The YouBike system, which currently has about 210 automated rental stations in Taipei and 230 in New Taipei City, has been expanded to Taichung and Changhua in central Taiwan.
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