Reading Council to create detailed bike hire scheme plans

Mon 21 March 2011, 5:53 pm

Reading Borough Council has agreed to draw up detailed plans to create the biggest UK bike hire scheme outside of London.

At a meeting last week, the council cabinet asked council officers to hammer out plans for a scheme which would see around 1,000 bikes for hire at up to 150 docking stations across the city.

Councillors believe the plan could increase cycling by up to 40 per cent – to 10,000 trips a day.

Under the proposals bicycles would be publicly available to use for short journeys around Reading, based on a smart tag and registration scheme.

Initial discussions envisaged offering the first half hour free, and using a pricing structure that would encourage users to return bicycles to docking stations quickly for others to use.

The council said it was also in discussions with colleagues in Wokingham Borough Council the possibility of extending the scheme to Woodley, Early and the business parks around Reading.  

Transport officers will now work up specific details like the scope and operational requirements of the scheme, submitting planning applications for docking stations and negotiating a sponsorship agreement.

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