Update (7/2/2012): The program has reopened. Read about it here.
After only two weeks in operation, all bikes belonging to the Spokies Bike Share program have been removed from the racks. Citing problems with the credit card software and a design flaw in the bikes that has “led to incidents of theft and vandalism”, the Oklahoma City Office of Sustainability and Downtown Oklahoma City, Inc. made the decision to temporarily suspend the program. The software and bike fixes can be expected to take up to three weeks to complete at which time they hope to restore the program.
We had reported on the theft of two bicycles last week. However, it appears that it is the software issue that is of the most concern. Apparently the bug affects when users are charged the $500 deposit after a bicycle is assumed to be stolen. By design, that charge is to be charged to the account after 48 hours.
According to Office of Sustainability Director, Jennifer Gooden, “As with any new program, we anticipated a few issues with the launch of Spokies, but we did not know it would be to this great of an extent. This approach will allow us to focus on addressing the software issue, return to full operation quickly, and ensure all Spokies members are completely happy with the service.”
People who had already signed up for a monthly or annual membership will be granted a free month of membership after the program resumes.
You can read the press release from Spokies here and below is a report from News 9: