More than 150 electric bikes were today made available for hire at docking stations across the West Midlands, giving even more people the opportunity to cycle.
The eBikes, made by Pashley, are the latest addition to the West Midlands Cycle Hire (WMCH) scheme and are available for hire in Birmingham, Coventry, Sandwell, Solihull, Stourbridge, Sutton Coldfield, Walsall and Wolverhampton.
Their arrival will allow riders to make longer journeys more easily and will offer extra help to those who may have difficulty pedalling a regular cycle or struggle with hills. And affordable hire costs give those put off by the expense of buying a new eBike the opportunity to give it a go.
The roll-out follows the successful launch of the West Midlands Cycle Hire scheme earlier this year which has so far introduced 1,350 distinctive green and grey branded pedal bikes onto the region’s streets and seen more than 169,000 rides taken. The new eBikes have their own green and purple branding to make them easy to identify but will use the same docking stations.
Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street, Cllr Ian Brookfield, leader of City of Wolverhampton Council and Wolverhampton cycling ambassador Hugh Porter were among the first to ride them at a launch event in Wolverhampton city centre.
The Mayor said: “It has been a fantastic year for cycle hire, with more than 170,000 journeys taken on our fleet of bikes since March’s launch. Now, with the scheme having proved so popular, we are ready to take the next step with West Midlands Cycle Hire and roll out eBikes.
“The greater range on the eBikes makes them a clean and green alternative to the car for even more journeys around our region, whilst they will also help more people get involved with cycling and perhaps even try it for the first time.
“We know cycling and walking has huge benefits both for the environment and for people’s mental and physical health, as well as being great fan. And so that’s why we are looking to expand the scheme throughout 2022, making sure we reach more people and communities across the West Midlands.”
Investment in cycling facilities is a key part of the region’s plan to encourage more alternatives to the car for shorter journeys around busy towns and cities with a view to reducing congestion, improving air quality and helping the region achieve its #WM2041 net zero-carbon target.
Further information on the eBikes visit: wmcyclehire.co.uk