Morocco Welcomes Africa’s First Bike Share Program

Michele Debczak
Pierre Metivier via Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0
Pierre Metivier via Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0 / Pierre Metivier via Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0

Bike shares are a common sight on the streets of Cleveland, Portland, New York City, and various European cities, but the transportation trend has been slow to take off in any African metropolises. As City Lab reports, Marrakech, Morocco, is now home to the continent’s first: Medina Bike rolled out 10 docking stations comprising 300 bikes across the city’s center earlier this month.

The program is a collaboration between the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the French bike-sharing company Smoove, and the Moroccan business Estates Vision. The launch of the bike share coincides with the United Nations COP22 climate change conference currently being held in Marrakech. The focus of the event is the realization of the 2015 Paris Agreement between close to 200 nations to limit their use of greenhouse gas-producing fossil fuels. Cars are one of the biggest culprits behind climate change, and the Medina Bike share is meant to offer an earth-friendly transportation alternative.

The program was conceived with the conference in mind: Participants even had a docking station built just for them. But the bikes, along with Morocco’s commitment to responsible energy usage, are there to stay.

[h/t City Lab]