Tuesday, 04 March 2014 09:54

Bournemouth bike loan scheme hailed a success

Bournemouth bike loan scheme hailed a success © aganaui

A bicycle loan scheme aimed at students and staff that launched in October last year, has already been taken up by 50 Bournemouth University (BU) students. The scheme, funded by the Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF), is the result of collaboration between BU and Bournemouth Borough Council’s Getting About team and provides students with a loan bike, ‘D’ lock, lights and helmet for just £25 a year.

Prior to launching the scheme, BU carried out a Student Cycling Focus Group, involving both cyclists and non-cyclists. Not having a bike or difficulty in bringing a bike to Bournemouth was cited by 60% of participants as one of the main reasons for not cycling.

Amanda Williams, Environment & Energy Manager at Bournemouth University, said, “The success of the scheme is an excellent example of cross-organisational working. Getting About and the LSTF contribution has enabled us to offer our students and staff a great cycling package and remove some of the main barriers to them cycling.”

Funding has also been provided to expand cycle storage facilities around BU. For example, LSTF has recently funded the construction of a further 49 unsheltered bike racks and 18 sheltered bike racks across the university’s facilities.

It’s not only Bournemouth University students who are benefiting. An integrated cycle scheme alongside Ringwood Road has now been completed. The work features the creation of a 1.6km shared cycle path, removal of pinch points through path widening and improvements to the footbridge across Ringwood Road to make it safer to cycle across. Toucan crossings, designed to be used by both pedestrians and cyclists, have also been installed.

Residents will soon see the start of a project to create a six mile long leisure cycling route along the Stour Valley from Berry Hill to Hengistbury Head. This will include improvements to sections of the existing pathway, as well as new infrastructure. Works will start as soon as weather and river levels permit.

Crossings and other cycle infrastructure improvements have been completed on Wimborne Road near Bear Cross roundabout, Turbary Park Avenue near Kinson Road, on the A35 Christchurch Road near King’s Park, Talbot Avenue near Bournemouth University and on Duck Lane, with further developments being planned.  

Ian Kalra, Head of Transportation Services, said: “If you looked at Bournemouth’s cycling infrastructure a year or so ago and compare it to today, you’ll see the progress we’ve made. The work is ongoing though, we can do more to make travelling by bike safer and easier and we have plans for further significant infrastructure improvements.”

In addition to infrastructure improvements, Bournemouth Council has been sponsored a cycle safety awareness campaign over the dark winter months, when many cycling accidents happen. The Look Out campaign, which concluded at the end of February, encouraged road users to respect each other’s needs, look out for each other and follow the Highway Code.

Look Out campaign messages for cyclists:

-        Be visible

-        Always indicate your intentions

-        Follow the Highway Code

-        Respect the needs of pedestrians

For motorists

-        Always look twice for cyclists

-        Always indicate your intentions

-        Respect the needs of cyclists

-        Give them plenty of space 

Last modified on Tuesday, 04 March 2014 09:59
Tom F

Tom is the editor of www.wallisdown.info - contact him with your news for this site.

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