The system Ecobici it also suffered from the pandemic. First it stopped working. And then almost half of the 400 stations it had reached withdrew. Those in the vicinity of health centers were prioritized and it was decided to limit use within 30 minutes, to give preponderance to the workers of essential items. Now, little by little, as circulation and use are regularized, they began to replace stops that had been removed. And in the next few days they will add 20 in different neighborhoods.
According to official information, the stops will be installed mainly in neighborhoods of the South Zone, where the system has less presence. When they are all there will be in total 250, since in March they had recovered another 30.
Vélez Sársfield, Pompeya, Barracas, Villa Soldati, Villa General Miter, Villa del Parque, Villa Ortúzar, Villa Santa Rita, Parque Patricios, Parque Chas, Villa Lugano, Villa Luro, Mataderos, Liniers, Monte Castro and Villa Real are the neighborhoods that they will have new stops in the coming days.
In addition, they will be added 300 bicycles to supply the demand. With this there will be 2,300 wheels available and the gradual recovery of the 4,000 bicycles that existed before the pandemic is also being sought. Already in the last days before the isolation decreed since March 20 of last year, a shortage of units was noted that, according to official information, was the product of the vandalism and theft. For this reason, the vehicles were equipped with a monitoring system by GPS that allow them to be tracked.
From now on, Ecobici wheels can be retrieved with a QR code.
“In this new phase of openings we continue to expand the system, reincorporating more stations in different neighborhoods, and now also adding a new option to make the removal of bicycles easier and more practical “said Juan José Mendez, Secretary of Transportation for the City of Buenos Aires.
And it refers to the option of obtaining a code from the application to withdraw a bike, now there is the chance to do it through the scanning of a QR code they already have the units. This method makes the procedure faster.
How does it work
The first step is to locate the QR code on the top of the handlebars of each roll. Then you have to open the application and select the “read QR code” button. After a few seconds of the scan, the green light and the audible signal confirm the unlocking to remove the bike. If the reading of the code does not work, the user must enter the sequence of letters found below the QR.
The use of the Ecobici system changed its modality after the pandemic. In addition to limiting time, It is only free from Monday to Friday for residents of Buenos Aires for half an hour (Those who exceed must pay). During the weekend a tariff must be paid. In the application are offered different season tickets or passes, which include combos for those who want to extend the usage time to more than half an hour from Monday to Friday.
They will add 20 new stations to the Ecobici system.
For its part, foreigners with residence in Argentina they can also use it in the form free from Monday to Friday, while foreign tourists must pay a pass to be able to use the system every day.
Another change imposed by the pandemic had to do with the purpose of use, which was previously more recreational and then migrated to more transfers for work reasons, a transformation also driven by restrictions on public transport, reserved for workers in essential sectors.
But at the same time, the sale of bicycles and travel increased 27% in pandemic. It was 320,000 a day in 2019, it was 405,000 last year. The growth had already been noticeable before the coronavirus, in the division of transfers according to modality: those completed by bike went from 0.4% of the total in 2009 to reach 4% ten years later.
Another data is given by the application Google Maps. The search for bike routes increased more than 98% in the City of Buenos Aires from 2019 to 2020. And by 177% if the pre-pandemic data is compared. At the same time, the growth of trips on avenues with bicycle lanes was more than 186%.
The use of bicycles in the City skyrocketed during the pandemic. Photo: Fernando de la Orden.
For this reason, last year the exclusive lanes of the avenues were built Corrientes and Córdoba, and it is being evaluated to add in other streets and avenues, although there are still no specific dates. The current network of bicycle lanes reaches 267 kilometers.
“Culturally this has been changing for a long time, today people tell us that they choose to move by bicycle, and more in this pandemic. That is why the City has to adapt and that is what is happening: we have 267 km of bicycle lanes, even on large avenues, and a network with 250 stations throughout the communes, “said the Chief of Cabinet of the Buenos Aires Government, Felipe Miguel.
The new stations
- Ramón Falcón Square (Ramón Falcón 3992). Velez Sarsfield
- Del Barco Centenera 2919. Nueva Pompeii
- Leonardo Pereyra (California 2957). Barracks
- Correa Morales and Lafuente. Villa Soldati
- Magariños Cervantes 2465. Villa General Miter.
- Arregui 2792. Villa del Parque.
- August 25 Square (Giribone 1436). Villa Ortúzar.
- Belüsstegui 2890. Villa Santa Rita.
- Plaza José C. Paz (Pepirí and José C. Paz). Patricios Park.
- Exodus Jujeño Square (Liverpool 2812). Chas Park.
- Olympic Village (Climbing 4347). Villa Lugano.
- Army of the Andes Square (Albariño 40). Villa Luro.
- Villa Luro Station. (Virgil 90).
- Mataderos Hacienda Market. (Lisandro De la Torre 2215).
- Basualdo and Rodó (Basualdo 1218). Slaughterhouses.
- Santojanni Park (Pattern 6302). Liniers.
- Alvarez Jonte and Benito Juárez (Benito Juárez 2231). Mount Castro.
- Plaza Dr. Juan B. Terán (Nogoyá 5539). Villa Real.
- Soldier of the Frontier 4999. Villa Lugano.
- Lugano Station (Galician Dolphin 5802).