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BICYCLE BOXES: AN INITIATIVE OF THE PARIS CITY COUNCIL AIMED AT ALL THOSE WHO PARK THEIR BIKES OUTSIDE.

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This is the latest innovation in Parisian street furniture. Experimented at 6, impasse Guéménée (IV e ) and 11, rue Jacques Cœur (IV e ), near the cycle path on rue de Rivoli, the vélobox is a locked metal bicycle shelter, the key to which was given to the first users on Thursday 21 March.

An experiment

The first two prototypes each have six places. "As this is an experiment, the model that will be deployed in Paris by the end of the year may not be exactly the same," warns Christophe Najdovski (EELV), deputy mayor in charge of transport, roads and public space, who specifies that a call for tenders has been launched at the end of 2018.

A subscription from 8 to 10€ per month. The elected representative announces that "300 to 500 sheltered and secure places will be installed in the capital by the end of 2019. This represents an investment of €1 million, to which must be added an annual operating budget of €200,000 which covers the upkeep, maintenance and management of the subscriptions". The subscription to this new service is expected to cost "€8-10 per month," says Mr Najdovski.

Currently in the experimentation phase, the first two veloboxes have been made available free of charge to volunteers who appreciate the initiative. Installed in impasse Guéménée, Marco, a 53-year-old university professor, stresses that "it is practical and reliable, as the municipality has assured us that the key is non-reproducible".

Limiting theft

Designed for cyclists who, like Marco, do not have a room or courtyard to store bikes in their building, the bikebox should help limit theft. An 18th century resident, Régine hasn't dared to leave her bicycle in the street since one morning she found it without a front wheel!

"The shopkeepers told me that there was a traffic in spare parts", reports this quinqua who has since been storing her two-wheeler in the cellar. "But it's not practical. If there was a closed bicycle box in my street, I would be ready to use it," she confides.

On the other hand, this Parisian woman ticks on the announced rate: "8 € per month, I find it's quite expensive, compared for example to the annual subscription to Vélib' which is 37,20 €. Aligning the rental of the Vélobox with the annual Vélib' subscription would seem reasonable to me".

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