Three firms express interest in Chandigarh public bicycle sharing project
Three companies have shown an interest in running the ₹20-crore public bicycle sharing project being rolled out by the Chandigarh Smart City Limited (CSCL) under which 5,000 bicycles will be available on rent in different parts of the city.
The firms that have placed the bids to get the contract for the project include Delhi Cycles Private Limited, SLS Construction Private Limited and Smart Bike Mobility Private Limited.
Both regular bicycles as well as battery-operated bicycles will be available on rent from 617 dock stations across the city. A senior CSCL official said that they are currently making a technical evaluation of the bids before opening the financial bids and then rolling out the final allotment of the contract. This may take two to three weeks, the official said.
The project, meanwhile, has been pending for two years. The major reason is that since 2017, the UT failed to attract investors every time it floated a tender. The latest tender floated in May relaxed norms to provide more opportunity to private parties to get good returns in exchange for their ₹20 crore investment required for the project’s execution.
Despite this, only a Chennai-based firm had shown interest in setting up the project. Then CSCL made further changes, allowing firms dealing with battery-operated bicycles to apply for the contract as well.
HOW THE PROJECT WILL WORK?
The project, once executed, involves borrowing a bicycle from any docking station across the city and returning it to any docking station after a ride. UT will create 617 cycle dock stations in proximity to markets, bus stops, tourist places, parking areas, institutional spaces, open spaces and parks.
Each station will have 10 cycles available for rent and additional parking space for those dropping them. The cycle at the dock station will be unlocked and released for use through an app. All cycles will have GPS trackers to avoid theft. Rates are fixed on an hourly basis. There will be two sets of rates, one for members and the other for non-members. The rates will be ₹10 per hour for non-members and ₹5 for members. Annual membership fee is ₹200.
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