Have you heard that Dublin city council plan to provide 450 rental bikes at over 40 locations in Dublin city this Summer? Could this be the solution we have all been waiting for? Let’s take a closer look and see how it’s going to work…
The long awaited bike rental scheme is set to be up and running in Dublin city in the next two months. In a deal that was sealed back in December 2006, Dublin City Council in conjunction with outdoor advertising company JC Decaux are now in the final stages of rolling out the bike stations across the city. Bike stations are due to be completed by the end of June with 40 pick-up and drop-off locations from Smithfield in the west to the docklands in the east and from the Mater Hospital in the north as far as the Grand Canal on the southside.
The way it will work is that each station will have about nine bikes and busier areas such as the train and bus stations will have more. At each station there will be a slot-like machine, which will allow the user to “rent” the bike. The user will be able to pick the bike up at one location and pop it back to another station closest to their destination. This should make getting around Dublin city a doddle as well as having a positive effect on the environment by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and traffic congestion, and of course, it’s also a way of promoting a healthier lifestyle.
Dublin City Council is planning to charge €10 a year to join, with the first half an hour of rental free and very reasonable rates thereafter. Visitors to Dublin will be encouraged to rent a bike at a very attractive reduced fee.
In return for providing and maintaining all the bikes for the scheme, multi national advertising company JC Decaux will receive 100 outdoor advertising spaces in Dublin estimated to cost about €1 annually.(Source; Irish Times 1-5-09)
The same ‘bike for billboard’ scheme is currently operating in Paris. The bikes supplied by JC Decaux are well built, with three gears, un-deflatable tyres and are said to be ‘damage-resistant’. They also come with a lock and a bell to warn pedestrians that you’re coming through! However it has been reported that even though the bike rental scheme has been a huge success in Paris, there has also been a lot of vandalism and disappearance of bikes.
Other cities operating bike schemes include Lyon, Vienna, Seville, Berlin and Copenhagen.
We would love to hear what you think of this new bike scheme. Is 450 rental bikes too few to make an impact on Dublin’s traffic? Are you ready to leave the car at home? If you’re visiting Dublin will you use it?
We want to hear what you think…