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Read the latest news from across the whole sector that highlights the development of affordable, accessible and low-carbon shared mobility

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Shared Bikes News - 25 Apr 2018

Expansion of successful social inclusion project in Glasgow inspiring refugees and women to cycle

Bikes for All is growing from its roots in Govanhill to work with community organisations city-wide including refugee and homeless charities such as Saheliya and the Night Shelter. The project is offering access to a bike for £3, reducing the price of nextbike annual membership from £60, aiming at boosting people’s health and wellbeing by encouraging those without access to their own bike, or in need of confidence building through road skill and route navigation sessions. The launch was celebrated on 13th April with bike rides and a film screening.
The partnership is a collaboration between Bike for Good, nextbike, Bikeplus, Glasgow Centre for Population Health and Cycling Scotland. The organisations involved are: Red Cross (Chrysalis project), Night Shelter, Govan Community Project, Kinning Park Complex, Central and West Integration Network, Maryhill integration network, Youth Community Support Agency (YCSA), Blue Triangle, Thenue Housing Association, New Gorbals Housing Association, Saheliya, LGBT Mental health and wellbeing. Victoria Leiper, Head of Projects at Bike for Good said “Although the nextbike scheme is incredibly popular in Glasgow, we know that there are significant barriers which prevent more people from accessing it.  These are often financial, language related or due to a lack of confidence to cycle in the city.  This project will attempt to break these barriers down by providing support and guidance to get cycling. Julian Scriven, Managing Director of nextbike UK, commented: “We are delighted with how well the scheme has been received in Glasgow by people from all walks of life. “By offering reduced price memberships and reducing payment barriers, nextbike is demonstrating its commitment to making cycling more accessible to low income and under-represented groups.” Bikes for All is part financed by the European Social Fund and Scottish Government through the Social Innovation Fund.
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Shared Bikes News - 29 Nov 2017

Local Authorities Developing Bike Share Schemes

List of Local Authorities currently seeking Bike Share suppliers

Updated 19.04.18 Bikeplus has collated a list of local authorities currently developing a bike share scheme for their area. The list is designed to support open transparent competitive procurement processes as well as reducing unnecessary approaches to city authorities. Bikeplus encourages all cities interested in a scheme to provide us with their details for this list.  

Name of Authority:- Bournemouth Borough Council and the Borough of Poole

Status:-tender submissions due by 14th May 2018” Contact  

Name of Authority:- Luton Borough Council

Status:- Open to proposals  until 9th March Login  Contact  

Name of authority: Derry Council and Strabane District Council

Status: ‘Delivery of a Public Bicycle Hire Scheme – TENV18-003’. Contact details: Request tender documents  

Name of authority: Essex Highways

Status: Currently open to proposals. Contact  

Name of authority: Royal Borough of Kingston Upon Thames

Status: Currently open to proposals. Contact
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articles - 14 Nov 2017

Bike share: reaching people who could cycle, but don’t

Mobility Matters 11 November 2016 The bicycle is an incredible invention. It’s a social leveller, the second cheapest mode (after walking), leads to healthier people and cuts congestion and emissions. There are also still far more bikes in the world than cars. Rather than being displaced by the internal combustion engine, the humble bike is busy reinventing itself as an increasingly important component of future travel and future lifestyles.  
  Whilst there must be access for those who cannot walk or cycle, active travel has to be top of the list for planning local access. This year has seen the Government publish its Value of Cycling report, and the draft Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy. The case for cycling has never been better made.   But cycling is not one uniform activity. There are distinct bike-related cultures in the UK. People riding bikes as utility vehicles and the lycra-clad cycling devotee. From a professional point of view, they seem more like separate species linked at the bike-shaped genus level – maybe cyclum communalis vs cyclum individualis.   How do we reach out to those who might cycle, but don’t? Or those who don’t consider it an option, but could? In short, how do we cultivate the delicate flower that is cyclum communalis or, in transport speak, encourage a modal shift to cycling?   Bike share is an important tool for reaching this group. It consists of mainly public bike hire schemes such as those in London, Liverpool and Glasgow, and also includes bike pools in workplaces or communities and bike hire from rail stations.   A key market for public bike share schemes is people making first or last-mile links with public transport hubs. Many of these people have one or more bikes at home, but they either do not want or can’t use their own bikes for these journeys. This alone probably justifies public bike hire becoming a norm in all urban areas.   Public bike share also reaches a different demographic: people who might cycle but don’t. The most recent research for Transport for London shows that 38% of users were prompted to start cycling by Santander Cycles.   Giving people the option of an electric bike opens access to bikes further. This is not a new idea. Bike share and electric bikes (plus leisure cycling) were all recognised as significant agents in expanding the reach of cycling through the DfT’s Cycle Demonstration Towns, in the latter stages of Cycling England’s work and through the initial results from the Finding New Solutions programme.   Both bike share and electric bikes remove significant known barriers to cycling. Bike share provides access to bikes with no commitment or need for investment or maintenance. Electric-assist bikes ‘iron out’ hills, encourage novice cyclists to give cycling a go, as well as encouraging cycling for longer distances. Whilst these benefits are concrete and obvious, their real value is more subtle and is reflected in the joyful reactions as people try an electric-assist bike for the first time.   The anecdotes are supported by the initial findings of the DfT-funded Shared Electric Bike Programme to be published shortly. In addition, the recent Cycleboom project shows impressive physical and mental health impacts of older people using electric bikes. This highlights an otherwise elusive win; health benefits in a non-traditional cycling user group. In short, people riding electric bikes without having to purchase one were happier and healthier. Scaling this up by making electric bikes available through various bikeshare models would be incredibly simple to do.   A big challenge in “cycling” is in normalising it in the public mind. This requires a change in people’s attitudes to cycling – which we are seeing happening – and then this translating to a shift in individual’s behaviours.   For bike share, it requires planners, policy-makers, advisers, fleet managers and communities to be aware of what’s possible, how to make it work and what the impacts are likely to be. It also requires some re-framing of language and approach – it’s about investing in health benefits, accessibility, social inclusion and reductions in congestion and emissions rather than subsidising a bike hire scheme.  
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Shared Bikes News - 8 Nov 2017

Coalition of bike share operators outline a vision for good working practices

  This letter is from a broad coalition of the main bike share operators with interests in the UK, moderated by Bikeplus 6th November 2017  

Creating Successful Public Bike Share

  Dear All   There have been dramatic changes in the public bike share world in 2017. Opportunities have been opened up due to the arrival of privately financed operators from the Far East and Europe coupled with the development of new technology allowing for greater flexibility. These lead to opportunities for an expansion of bike share in the UK with faster deployment. Furthermore, the option to provide bike share schemes to a city without the need for capital expenditure has brought into question the need for formal tendering processes. Avoiding lengthy expensive procurement is welcomed on all sides but raises the question of what replaces it.   This makes city-scale bike share an affordable, rapidly deliverable part of the solution to key urban policy objectives including air quality improvement, access and accessibility, congestion reduction and health improvement. Bikeplus is as an independent charity working to maximise the benefits of bike share schemes. Bikeplus hosts an Operators and Suppliers Group to facilitate joint initiatives and promote best practice.   With the aim of setting high standards the group has collated a set of recommendations for cities to consider when developing public bike share. These stem from the extensive expertise built by operators dealing with city authorities around the world, moderated and co-ordinated by Bikeplus to provide commercially impartial guidance.  
  The group recommend:
  1. Regulation: The Group strongly recommends there is a need for regulation rather than individual city guidelines. It is suggested that the Bikeplus Accreditation Scheme is adopted as a UK-wide streamlined, consistent standard to inform the selection of operators. The scheme has been developed with extensive consultation with public and private sector bodies and has the advantage compared to Codes of Conduct of providing third-party proactive scrutiny.

Bike share Accreditation Scheme

 
  1. Transparent Competitive Process: Where funding is being offering a tender process will be required, however where a scheme is being privately financed the Group recommends that Cities move from the use of a full tender to a simpler “Request for Proposals” where all operators are invited to outline what they could offer towards a set of requirements to a defined open timetable. Alternatively, a licensing system could be adopted to select who can operate in the area particularly where attracting more than one operator is desirable.
 
  1. Licencing multiple operators:
  • The group recommends the use of licensing where an authority is considering allowing more than one operator;
  • It is recommended that licences should include reference to the need for Bikeplus Accreditation;
  • The group recommends that careful consideration is given to the inclusion of more than two operators in cities of less than 150,000 population or three operators in cities  greater than 150,000 population unless there is a strong differentiation in service;
  • The group recommends that revenue from licensing is ringfenced for reinvestment in cycling initiatives such as supporting social inclusion and safer cycling initiatives;
  • Bikeplus can provide examples of licensing agreements to support cities
 
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Shared Bikes News - 10 Oct 2017

Future of UK Bike Share Conference Presentations

Presentations from the speakers at the Bikeplus 2nd Annual Conference

For copies of the presentations please email info@como.org.uk

Day One   Bikeplus Survey Results 2017 Antonia Roberts, Bikeplus Opening Address from Greater Manchester Councillor Chris Paul, Deputy Cycling and Walking Commissioner for Greater Manchester Address from Chris Boardman Keynote Opening - Is the future shared? Ed Gillespie, Futerra  

      Trends in bike share from North America  Aaron Ritz, NABSA, Better Bike Share Partnership & City of Philadelphia          

   
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Shared Bikes News - 6 Jun 2017

Interest-free loans for electric bikes in Scotland

  Businesses looking to purchase plug-in electric vehicles, electric scooters or electric bikes are being offered interest-free loans by The Energy Saving Trust in Scotland.   The money is available for schemes looking to add electric transport to their fleet in Scotland, or to launch in new areas.    
  Contact Gordon Manson at the Energy Saving Trust to apply or for more details call 0131 539 4138 or email gordon.manson@se.homeenergyscotland.org  
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