Jump Bikes Get a Second Chance in Mexico CityBy Andrea Villar | Mon, 10/19/2020 - 08:00
Uber Jump bikes are back in Mexico City but not handled by the ride-hailing company. After merging its Jump business with Lime back in May, Bicitekas, a group that has rescued hundreds of bicycles from destruction and that advocates for cycle towns, will deploy 1,600 bikes for public use. "It's good that they did. In other parts of the world, Uber sent them (the bikes) to the dump," said the specialized media The Verge.
The aim of this group is to give bicycles to people who do not normally have access to programs such as EcoBici. Bicitekas saw an opportunity in the business Uber decided to put aside and paid the company a symbolic price for each bicycle. “We worked with repaired bicycles and there were more than a thousand bikes about to be destroyed. We just could not let that happen,” Agustín Martínez, President of the group, told The Verge.
Shortly after Uber announced that it was shutting down the Jump business in Mexico City, the former Jump team claimed and battled to save the rest of the bikes after the ride-hailing company destroyed 600 units. "I felt really sad because me and my team had worked so hard to make the Jump bikes the best in the world,” Darío Mejía, former Chief of Mechanics at Jump in Mexico City told The Verge. This is how they found and managed to sell them to Bicitekas.
As part of the selling process, the batteries were removed. Once in the group's hands, the process consisted of covering the hole where the batteries were, making the bikes lighter and removing the Jump logo so that they could be baptized with their new name: 'Bici Catarinas'. There are still 1,200 bikes to be repaired and Bicitekas needs US$150,000 to do it. However, 400 bikes have already been funded after the company made an agreement with the Azcapotzalco mayor's office, where EcoBici is not present, to repair and lend out the bikes.
Since May, Bicitekas has also been working on the "Recicletas" project, which has since repaired and donated 113 bicycles to health workers, said Martínez.