Update On Leeds Bike Share Scheme from Leeds City Council
2018 is set to be an exciting year for cycling in the Leeds district as we progress the Cycling Starts Here Strategy and the Citywide Cycling Partnership.
As you may be aware the progress on the Leeds Cycling Starts Here Strategy will be going for approval at the Leeds City Council Executive Board in February 7th, and is published today. The Link is Here.
In brief the Report covers two key areas:-
· The finalising of a Partnership between Leeds City Council and British Cycling
· The endorsement of a bike share scheme for Leeds, and the agreement for Officers to initiate further discussion with the preferred operator ofo, for an initial 12 month period.
The preferred operator ofo is a ‘dockless’ or ‘freeflowing’ operator which alleviates the need for any significant capital expenditure. The number of bicycles, preferred locations and the geo fenced area for launch, will be agreed with Leeds City Council prior to the launch of the scheme in Spring 2018.
Initially the scheme is intended to cover the City Centre, the university area alongside part of the City Connect route. It is however envisaged that the scheme will grow to take in the residential areas close to the City Centre shortly after the launch, extending in due course in line with demand. Further too this there is a possibility of a number of smaller geo fenced areas in local towns and outlining towns such as Otley and Wetherby to compliment other modes of public transport.
Since the initial discussions commenced a number of other schemes operated by ofo have begun in the UK. Most recently Sheffield where ofo launched a scheme in a partnership arrangement with the Sheffield City Council similar to the proposal Leeds scheme.
It is envisaged that a partnership with ofo to deliver a public bike share scheme, will open up access to bikes for the residents, commuters and visitors to the district, providing an alternative mode of public transport for short journeys, it will also complement other modes of public and private transport. The bike share scheme can also be used as an affordable mode of travel to assist people back in to employment. ofo are a Bikeplus accredited provider and employ their staff locally.
We look forward to your continued support as we strive to encourage more people to cycle more often.