US cities to benchmark public bike system
Changwon’s “Nubija” public bike system is expected to make a debut in the United States soon. A delegation of Changwon City officials recently attended an annual academic meeting held in the U.S., at the invitation of the Transportation Research Board (TRB) of the U.S. National Academies.
During their stay from Jan. 18 to 25, the delegates visited the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG), a metropolitan planning organization of six of the 10 counties in Southern California; the Los Angeles transportation bureau; the Washington, D.C. transportation office; and California Polytechnic State University. They briefed officials on Nubija and operation of the public bike system.
The delegates made the U.S. trip after organizers of the TRB meeting asked them to present papers on Nubija. California Polytechnic State University’s department of urban planning also asked them to give special lectures on Nubija, a model public bike system.
American participants in those meetings responded favorably to Nubija and expressed willingness to import the public bike system, city officials said.
During the meeting organized by the TRB, a global authority on transportation, participants said they were interested in the accomplishments Nubija has made, such as using it as transportation means during commuting time and its use by almost all age groups, and Changwon’s knowhow on the implementation of the Nubija policy.
Officials from Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. praised technology and operational knowhow Nubija has developed on its own, and expressed willingness to import the technology in a positive manner, a Changwon City spokesperson said.
An official from Maryland, who read papers on Nubija, which were presented at the TRB meeting, proposed that the two sides hold working-level consultations on ways of increasing cooperation and introducing the Nubija system in the U.S.
Frank Wen, chief of the SCAG’s land use and environment planning bureau, said Nubija is the best public bike system he has ever seen and that it is an outstanding example which shows how efforts of a local administration have activated the system, the spokesperson said.
Wen said the SCAG’s technology appraisal committee will take up matters regarding Nubija and introduce it to six of the 10 counties in Southern California and 191 member cities to help them benchmark Changwon’s public bike system, according to the spokesperson.