In North America, one bike has symbolized bike share like no other. It’s the most ubiquitous piece of equipment in the industry. And it was designed by Michel Dallaire, drawn above.
For lack of a better phrase, Michel Dallaire is an “urban goods designer”–like an industrial designer, but less industrial. He’s created over 130 products for urban-related living–one of which being PBSC’s Bixi bike. The company was the first to establish a bike share system in North America in Montreal and has since implemented its product in over ten cities, including D.C., New York, Chicago, and soon-to-be San Francisco.
From New York Mag:
Docking system and bicycle (2008)
For Montreal’s Bixi bike, Dallaire created a triangular docking clamp and the accompanying solar-powered station. “I see this bike system as street furniture,” says Dallaire. “It’s a useful, practical object that people from the city enjoy. We are not using the infrastructure of the city, so you can deposit the station in a few hours, and if you want to change it the next day, we just remove the station.”
The bike itself was given a heavy aluminum boomerang backbone for maximum stability and durability, he says: “It’s very rugged, a very sturdy frame. In Montreal, this is our fifth season, and the bike is still behaving very well.” Anyone who thinks its handlebars resemble a quintessential feature of Canadian wildlife isn’t alone. “When we had the ergonomic and geometric results, one guy took the handlebars and put them beside his two ears. It looked like a moose. That design was not an objective,” he adds. “It was an accident.” Dallaire himself isn’t much of a bicycle enthusiast. His preferred commute is straddling his 2012 Harley-Davidson. “I’m not a professional cyclist,” he says, though he doesn’t think that hindered his design. “You don’t have to lay an egg to find out if it is good or not.”