Dubai's transport authority has signed a contract for ride-hailing app Careem to operate 3,500 bicycles across 350 smart docking stations in the emirate.
The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) said the service marks the first bicycle-pool phased program of its kind in the region.
Mattar Al Tayer, director-general and chairman of the RTA, and Mudassir Sheikha, co-founder and CEO of Careem, signed the agreement.
Under the deal, Careem will operate 1,750 bikes and install 175 stations during the first two years of the contract, which runs for 15 years.
In the following five years, the operation will grow to 3,500 bikes and 350 docking stations.
Careem will use a smart system to track bicycles, predict high occupancy areas, and connect all bicycles through GPS. It will operate solar-powered bicycle racks while customers can hire and pay for bike rides through Careem Bike app.
The service covers several Dubai hotspots such as the Marina, Jumeirah, Dubai Water Canal, Deira, Al Khawaneej and Al Qudra. It will also be available at safe roads of four districts namely Al Qusais, Al Mankhoul, Al Karama, and Al Barsha.
The speed limit on dedicated cycling lanes or safe roads is fixed at 40 kph.
Al Tayer said the RTA has constructed cycling tracks extending 274km in Dubai while the total length of cycling tracks in Dubai is expected to reach about 631.7km by 2023.
“Careem’s new partnership with RTA will be a great and exciting addition to the local transit network with the launch of Careem Bike service,” said Sheikha.
“Careem Bike offers mobility means to riders of buses, metro and tram in Dubai covering the first and last mile. Moreover, biking is a healthy practice that eases the congestion in the city and promotes healthy lifestyles. We are thrilled to roll out the first product for micro mobility in Dubai with our trusted transit partner, RTA," he added.