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Tartu bike share system to launch on 8 June

Tartu City Government Press Release

electric bike Photo: Ove Maidla

20 April / On 8 June 2019, Tartu will unveil its bike share system, comprised of 750 bikes in 69 bike share stations across the city.

A total of 510 bikes are electric and the remaining 240 are regular bikes.

According to Tartu Mayor Urmas Klaas, Tartu is standing on the threshold of major change, where the organisation of public transportation in the entire city will be taking a great leap forward. ‘In addition to the long-planned bike share system, new gas busses will also be entering service and the entire route network will be changing. Tartu will receive a modern and integrated public transportation network, where users will be able to combine bicycle riding with bus rides,’ said the Mayor.

According to Deputy Mayor Raimond Tamm, preparatory works for the bike share system are nearing completion: ‘The installation of bike share stations is in full swing, bikes continue to arrive from Canada, and software solutions are being fine-tuned. I hope that the residents of Tartu quickly adopt the bike share stations and the launch is seamless,' added Tamm.

In order to rent a bike, the user must have a valid period ticket for Tartu’s urban lines or they must purchase a season ticket for the bike share network. The user must create a bike share account, either on-line or via the mobile app, and connect it to a bank card with Internet payment capability. You can use a bus card or mobile app to unlock the bicycle. When returning the bike, the bike should be left in any bike share station, making sure that the bike has been properly locked. If there are no available spaces in the station, the bike can be secured with an additional lock.

The prices for the bike share system are also currently being worked out. If the user has the right to ride for free on the urban lines in Tartu, or if they have a 10, 30 or 90 day ticket, then there is no need to buy a separate bike share season ticket, although a personalised bus card must be connected to the bike share system, so that it would be possible to check the existence of a ticket. If the user has a season ticket, then each use of the bicycle for a period of 60 minutes is free, and each subsequent started hour is EUR 1. If one does not have a valid season ticket for the urban lines, then they must acquire a one day ticket, one week ticket or annual ticket for the bicycle sharing system, with current plans calling for the cost to be EUR 5, 10 and 30, respectively. Here, too, the principle holds: each use of the bike for a period of 60 minutes is free, and each subsequent started hour is EUR 1. The maximum period of use for a bike is 5 hours, after which a late fee of EUR 80 will apply.

Information boards will be installed at all bike share stations, containing precise instructions on how to use a bicycle and how much the ride costs. Electric assist bikes within the bike share system are easy to use, with the electric motor starting when pedalling and the bike being free of any additional control devices. Electric assist bikes will remain in circulation until temperatures fall below freezing, and during cold periods only regular bikes will remain in circulation.

The bike share system service is being organised by Tartu Linnatransport, a division of the city, which began operating on 1 April, where technicians have also been hired, who deal with the transportation of bikes between the various bike share stations as well as the repairing of bikes. If you should have any questions about using bikes, then please call the information telephone and ask for assistance.

The bike share system is being supplied by the Canadian company Bewegen Technologies Inc, who won the public procurement organised last spring.

The establishment of the bike share system is being financed by the European Regional Development Fund measure for urban areas (EUR 1.7 million, which includes EUR 250,000 from the city), the European Commission financed project SmartEnCity (nearly EUR 800,000, which includes EUR 133,000 from the city) and Tartu’s budget.
The bike share system’s homepage (ratas.tartu.ee) and the mobile app (Tartu Smart Bike) will be operational by the beginning of June. Until then, additional information can be found on Tartu’s homepage www.tartu.ee/rattaringlus.

Last changed 20.04.2019