Lexington, KY had a "Yellow Bikes" program from 2007 to 2010, funded by the non-profit Downtown Lexington Corporation. Overall the program was considered a success but the cost of maintaining the bikes became too prohibitive and people were not willing to pay more than $10 to rent them for a few hours at a time. Previously they tried renting them for as long as you needed them, but found that some of the bikes were being taken out of the downtown area (as far away as surrounding counties) or were being damaged and not reported. The city is now looking at implementing its own program with a bike kiosk rental system.
Some grocery stores have a system similar to an invisible fence which locks the wheels of the shopping cart when it leaves the property. Perhaps this could work on a larger scale with the bikes?
Find the NYC idea to be interesting, considering that mayor Doomberg wants that ban on soft drinks over 16 ounces. Of course, we know what will happen: People will buy two of them, and he makes more off the sales tax that way. Apparently 1 24 ounce drink is unhealthy, but 2 16 ounce drinks are OK.
Without Trains America Stops