Pune, Maharashtra, India
Continuing its mission to spread sustainable mobility and easy last-mile connectivity in Indian cities, ofo announced its first area-level operation in Pune by launching its services in the township of Magarpatta. The launch comes two months after the world’s largest bicycle-sharing company signed MoUs with the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) and Smart City Pune to support their ambitious Pune Cycle Plan.
Following the completion of its pilot-phase in some of the city’s closed campuses, the world’s first dock less bicycle-sharing platform operated via mobile app, has begun rolling out its signature yellow bicycles at key locations in the mixed-use township of Magarpatta, spanning an area of over 600 acres. The launch is in line with ofo’s commitment to support Pune’s efforts to become bicycle-friendly again and reclaim the ‘city of cycles’ tag.
Welcoming ofo to the city at the launch event, Satish Magar, MD, Magarpatta City said, “We walk to school, we walk to work, we walk to shop but we never thought that we will cycle to work. I thank ofo and Pune Smart City for this initiative.” Also present at the launch, Rajendra Jagtap, CEO, Pune Smart City added, “Non-motorised mode of transportation such as bicycles should be adopted for short distances and we should make it an integral part of our life to address last mile connectivity.”
Thrilled with trying out an ofo bicycle for the first time, a Magarpatta resident, Premsheela said: “This is a very good approach especially for IT professionals like me. It has always been difficult for us to travel within the city. We either had to walk for 15-20 minutes or take autorickshaws that cost up to Rs 40. Not only are ofo bicycles environmentally friendly but they’re also good for health because they make you exercise. I hope ofo will take this service outside Magarpatta soon.”
Another local resident, Deepesh shared: “I have to travel from my office to Destination Centre and back at least two times a day. ofo bicycles offer a convenient solution that will help me save time and get more out of my day.”
Dexter Sim, Expansion Manager, ofo, APAC said, “ofo’s bicycle-sharing model came from five students at the Peking University to tackle the problem of short-distance travel around the campus. Our focus is to provide a sustainable solution for last mile commute that will not only help check pollution but also reduce traffic congestion in expanding cities like Pune.”
Rajarshi Sahai, Director of Public Policy & Communications, ofo shared, “We are thrilled to bring ofo’s flexible bicycle sharing service to Magarpatta with our easy-to-use, safe and affordable riding experience. We have been working with PMC, Pune Smart City and other government bodies, planners, and residents to ensure that our services complement the cycling infrastructure that forms an integral part of the Pune Cycle Plan.”
ofo has made dockless bicycle-sharing a reality world over by seamlessly integrating technologies like GPS, mapping, mobile application, and analytics backed operations with a robust bicycle design. We encourage people to download the ofo application form iOS app store/Google Play Store and follow the simple steps of (1) sharing phone number and email; (2) integrate their card/wallet information; (3) scan the QR code or enter the plate number displayed on each bicycle to receive a passcode to unlock and ride to their destination; and (4) on reaching the destination, park the bicycle in any preferred parking area nearby and lock the bicycle to end their ride.
As part of the launch promotion, ofo is offering its bicycles at a nominal user charge and deposit. In the future, ofo remains committed to keeping its bicycles as an affordable and convenient way for travelers to avail pleasurable rides at reasonable costs.
One of the largest gated communities of its kind, Magarpatta City exemplifies innovative mixed-use townships in the country, where 120 farmers came together to create a land pool on outskirt of Pune and leased it for industrial and residential purposes. It is today home to about 40,000 people and many more visitors enjoying its unique mix of shopping, work, residential and community spaces.
Mobility has become a major civic issue in Pune recently as facilities for public commuting have not kept pace with the city’s growth. As per PMC’s Environment Status Report 2016-17, with 700 private vehicles being added to the roads every day, the city’s vehicle population is now equal to its human population. This rapid rise in vehicular traffic is leading to air pollution, health problems, accidents, and wastage of time in traffic congestion.
Prepared with support from the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India, the PMC’s Pune Cycle Plan has set out to create the necessary infrastructure for bicycle tracks, an integrated city-wide cycle network, seamless public sharing bicycle schemes and promotion activities for encouraging the use of this green, healthy, and affordable mode of transport. The dockless shared bicycles of ofo are being deployed to enable this vision of the city.