Take me back to Manchester
Wheely good news: Manchester on path to becoming cycling city
10th June 2014
... Comments

Plans are under way to turn Manchester into one of the top cycling cities in Europe, on par with London's "Boris Bikes", which enable greater – and greener – ease of movement around the capital.

Earlier this year, Manchester got its first taste of the bike-hire scheme, with 40 fold-up bikes made available at Piccadilly Station. Rental starts at £2.50 a day and the system, operated by nationwide cycle-hire firm Brompton Dock and Virgin Trains, has an online reservation facility.

But city bosses say that's not enough, and the council has identified some 20,000 people in Manchester who want to hire bikes and cycle around, especially to work. They say that in the coming years they aim to have more people cycling than anywhere else in England.

In London, Mayor Boris Johnson has overseen the roll-out of 5,000 sponsored bikes at 315 key locations around the city. Users can simply take a bike using their credit card or access key. However, there are risks to rider safety in high volumes of city traffic, and developing more cycle lanes is paramount to ensuring the welfare of cyclists, experts say.

City cycle schemes not only benefit the environment, as there are fewer vehicles on the road spewing out harmful greenhouse gases, but they also greatly boost the health of the population. Exercising to get to work, college or wherever is vastly more beneficial than sitting in traffic for long periods.

Manchester is not short of funds to develop a citywide bike-rental scheme. Transport for Greater Manchester has been allocated £5 million by the government to develop cycling initiatives so that more people start cycling to work. In addition, a funding application for cycling is currently with the Department for Transport.

Whether London, Amsterdam or Paris, making bicycles available in major cities has been a clear success, driven by strong demand and making city living all the more enjoyable. Now as Manchester works to introduce its own bike-rental scheme, soon it will be time for the training wheels to come off and everyone can benefit from the freedom of two wheels.

About the Author

Ann P

Member since: 22nd October 2013

I'm Ann, and I love promoting businesses with great reputations in Manchester. I hope you enjoy reading our blog and please contact me if you want to feature on thebestof Manchester.

Popular Categories