SAN JOSE (KCBS) – The new Bay Area Bike Share system has only been in service for a week but seems to be a success as four times as many bicyclists have signed up to use the service as there are bikes available.

Karen Schkolnick, spokeswoman for Bay Area Air Quality Management District said that 2,500 people have bought passes to ride the 700 bikes set up at 70 kiosks in five cities from San Jose to San Francisco and that she pleasantly surprised by the rapid embrace.

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“The community seems to be taking care of this equipment. There’s no theft. People seem to be using it,” she said.

More complete data on ridership, she said, would become available next week.

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A pass allows a rider to have unlimited rides of 30 minutes or less, after that it cost more.

“It really is intended for short trips and the surcharges are designed specifically to encourage short use of the bicycles so that they are available in circulation for shared use,” Schkolnick said.

Most riders are using the celeste green bikes for short trips—such as from a BART station to their workplace. Schkolnick hopes to expand the system with at least 300 more bicycles by the end of the year.

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