The Tech that Can Turn a Bikeshare Bike into an E-Bike

What’s rechargeable, fits in your pocket and can help you leap tall hills in a single bound? A personal, electric bikesharing battery, of course.

One of the next big potential trends in urban transportation, electric bikesharing can help expand mobility and increase bike use by offsetting barriers like hills, heat and urban sprawl that make cycling difficult. In 2015, Birmingham, Alabama launched the first city-scale bikesharing system in the U.S. featuring e-bikes, and other cities such as Seattle and San Francisco have also expressed an interest in electrifying their fleets.

While some European bikesharing systems are already powered by electric bikes, the concept has yet to fully take hold in the U.S. E-bikes tend to be a little heavier, more expensive and unfamiliar to American riders. Additionally, bikeshare stations have been traditionally been freestanding, solar-powered pods that can be deployed relatively quickly. To charge electric bikes, however, most stations will need to be connected to the city’s power grid, requiring construction permits, digging, inter-agency coordination and other complications…..