oBikes may no longer be seen on Melbourne's streets, with reports that the share bike operator is withdrawing from the city.
New rules were brought in recently allowing the EPA to fine oBike $3,000 for any bike that was carelessly abandoned as it would be classed as litter.
Instead of risking such fines, it seems oBike has decided to retreat.
However, while many people may rejoice in the news, Bicycle Network CEO Craig Richards said it is a great shame that oBike has been driven out of town and that the real loser is Melbourne.
“Cities all around the world are embracing dockless bike share, but here in Melbourne people couldn’t help but throw them in the river and whinge. We missed a golden opportunity to help Melbourne hold onto its mantle as the world's most liveable city,” said Mr Richards.
“It is sad that oBike weren’t able to make it work, but we look forward to other dockless bike share operators coming to Melbourne and providing a solving a vital piece of our transport puzzle."
While many Melburnians haven’t embraced dockless bike share, the story is different in Sydney, where more than 6,500 dockless bike trips are made every day.
However, there is some local support for dockless share bikes, with Lord Mayor Sally Capp encouraging other services.
“We welcome operators of cycling businesses because it gives people more of a choice in terms of how they’re going to get around our city and how they’re going to enjoy our city so on the whole we are supportive of that," Cr Capp said at a press conference.
Bicycle Network had supported oBike since they launched by encouraging people to use the bikes respectfully and running learn to ride sessions.
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