The idea seems simple.
And yet, no one had yet thought of putting it into practice.
On the one hand, the basement of Paris is full of parking spaces for currently unoccupied cars.
On the other hand, many Ile-de-France residents do not have a bicycle room, either at home or at their place of work… So why not transform these empty spaces into so many spaces each housing up to nine bicycles?
This concept was born about two years ago in the minds of two young entrepreneurs, Paul Martichoux and Diego Delamare.
They imagined the “12.5” online platform (like the surface in square meters of a parking space) in order to “recycle” this available space and help the development of cycling.
The number of bicycles has jumped 52% in one year in Paris
“Cycle paths have developed a lot, but the fear of theft remains the main obstacle for those who hesitate to get on the bike,” notes Paul Martichoux.
And although the practice of two-wheelers has exploded with the Covid-19 health crisis, the offer of protected parking spaces for bicycles remains limited.
“The demand is very strong.
We have already more than 100 registered since the launch in September, details Paul Martichoux.
There are individuals, but also companies looking for locations for their employees, or even cargo bike delivery services. ”
The young 12.5 team has identified around 500 underground car parks in Paris that meet precise accessibility criteria.
And 150 are already ready to receive around 1000 bicycles.
“In general, these are car parks located on level -1, with a not too steep ramp,” explains Diego Delamare.
On average, the bicycle space is priced at 17 euros per month for individuals.
The seats have two attachment points, on the frame and the wheel.
Two padlocks are even provided to the tenant. ”
"Our ambition is to be the Airbnb for cycling"
Clémence, a resident of the 15th arrondissement, took the plunge by renting her place… even before buying her bike.
“I am a fan of electric Vélib ', but I did not have a room suitable for two-wheelers in my building.
I saw that there was this place 3 minutes from my home.
Now that I know where to put it, I will finally be able to order my electric bike. ”
The partner car parks of 12.5 belong to social landlords (Paris Habitat), parking operators (Indigo) or even hotels, who thus wish to diversify and “optimize” their unoccupied spaces.
“But the platform is also aimed at individuals who do not use their parking space.
Our ambition is to be the Airbnb for cycling.
For a car park owner, renting nine bicycles is as profitable as a car, ”explains Paul Martichoux.
The start-up is also aimed at motorcycles and scooters, whose parking could become chargeable in Paris.
In the near future, 12.5 is considering diversifying its range of services.
With, why not, home repair solutions or "bike parking and theft insurance included" packages.
While cycle sales hit record highs in 2020, the baby queen market has a bright future ahead.
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