Public bike schemes for Cork, Galway, Limerick to be announced today
Bikes will carry name of private sponsor
The estimated public cost of the new bike schemes is €5 mllion.
Commuters in Cork, Limerick and Galway should be on their bikes by this time next year when plans for public bike schemes are expected to come to fruition.
Details of the three schemes are to be announced today by Minister of State for Public Transport Alan Kelly, along with the identity of a private sector partner.
Costing in the region of €5 million to develop, the schemes will be funded through a combination of monies from the National Transport Authority and from a private sector partner who is to pay for the sponsorship and naming rights of the approximately 700 bikes.
The schemes will be modelled on the successful Dublin public bike rental scheme, which has been in operation for the last four years. Costs to the user in the three regional cities are expected to be similar to those in the capital where there is an annual subscription of €10 and free use for the first half hour.
It is expected that Cork City will have 300 bikes with 25 docking stations around the city centre. Limerick will have 200 bikes at 23 docking stations and Galway will have 200 bikes at 20 stations.
Consultation has been ongoing on the exact location of the docking stations in Cork, with 31 locations earmarked as possibilities.
In Limerick, the city council published proposed locations for docking stations last month, as did Galway City Council.
Early estimates of usage, prepared for the National Transport Authority, envisaged Cork would attract 2,250 annual subscribers, while Galway and Limerick would attract 1,500 each. This compares to more than 37,000 subscribers in Dublin, which has 550 bikes and 44 docking stations. It is understood that the estimates have been revised upwards.
A separate scheme, considered at an earlier stage for Waterford City, will not be included in the announcement.