Council to wheel out bicycle storage facilities

The council hopes the facilities will be completed by early 2013

NEW on-street bike storage is set to be trialed in up to six Edinburgh streets, to see if it helps encourage more people to take to two wheels.

If approved, the Council expects that the work is likely to be completed in late 2012 and early 2013.  Councillors will discuss the proposal at the Transport, Infrastructure and Environment committee on Tuesday, February 21.

The storage will cost around £50,000 to install, with maintenance being managed by the Council’s neighbourhood teams. Residents will also be asked to help with their operation if they wish to.

Residents groups and cyclists have already expressed an interest in working with the Council to improve cycle storage across the city. Talks will now take place to identify the best locations and types of storage for the pilot project.

Transport Convenor Councillor Gordon Mackenzie said: “We already have a great track record in promoting cycling but this is one of the areas where we particularly want to do more. Making it easier for people to use bikes is important for reducing congestion, but it’s also a great way to keep fit and see the city from a different perspective.”

People living in flats or other similar buildings can sometimes find it difficult to store cycles because of issues to do with shared access and building or planning regulations. While householders may have options in their stairwell or garden, the Council’s support is required for on-street storage.

The Council has already taken various steps to improve the city’s environment for cyclists. This includes creating cycle paths, cycle crossings and introducing 20mph speed limits in over half of the city’s residential streets. Two major cycle schemes are also due to open within the city in Spring 2012.

The capital funding for the proposed project has been provided from this year’s budget. The Council has also made a commitment to spend a minimum of 5% of its transport budget on cycling for 2012/13, an increase of around 70% on 2011/12.