Beryl has been selected by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) as its delivery partner to design, deliver and operate Greater Manchester’s cycle hire scheme.
The scheme is part of wider plans from the Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham to develop Greater Manchester’s Bee Network. Phase one of the scheme is set to include 1,500 bikes and e-bikes, available from over 200 new cycle hire docking stations across Manchester, Trafford and Salford.
The British operator brings a wealth of experience from delivering successful bike and e-scooter schemes in locations around the country including Norwich, Watford, Hereford, Bournemouth and the Isle of Wight. It also provides key technology for the TfL Santander Cycles in London and the Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) bikes in the West Midlands.
The scheme in Greater Manchester will be planned and implemented alongside the local community. Consultations have already begun with key local stakeholder groups, and this engagement will continue throughout the planning and implementation process.
“We are absolutely thrilled to have been selected to deliver Greater Manchester’s new cycle hire scheme, bringing our experience and innovation to one of the great city regions in Europe,” said Philip Ellis, CEO of Beryl. “As we begin to recover from the coronavirus pandemic, enabling people to travel safely, affordably, and conveniently by bike will be key to rejuvenating our high streets and improving our environment – particularly reducing air pollution.
“Andy Burnham, Chris Boardman and Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) have fantastic ambition when it comes to active travel, and we’re excited to be playing our role and bringing our experience in delivering world-class cycle hire. There is huge appetite for this scheme, and we can’t wait to see people on our bikes and e-bikes later this year.”
Burnham added: “We’re fully integrating our public transport system – The Bee Network – and building the UK’s largest cycling and walking network, so I am very pleased to announce that Beryl has been named as our delivery partner for cycle hire, with the first bikes going on the ground later this year.
“Our cycle hire will be one of the largest docked systems outside London and I cannot wait to use the new bikes myself as a way to get from A to B. We’re making huge strides towards our plans to build back greener and be carbon neutral by 2038.”
Greater Manchester has also published its final clean air plan to kick-start the city region’s green revolution, helping to tackle the problem of air pollution, which contributes towards at least 1,200 deaths per year in the city region. It has secured over £120 million in government funding to support local businesses upgrade to cleaner, compliant vehicles so they can travel in a GM-wide Clean Air Zone without incurring a daily charge. Applications for funding support will open from November this year.
In light of feedback following last year’s eight-week consultation on the plans and the impact of COVID-19, particularly on small businesses, GM-registered taxi/private hire owners and LGV owners will be given more time, money and options to upgrade.
This includes temporary exemptions for an additional year (until 31st May 2023) for all hackney and private hire vehicles (PHV) licensed by a GM District. Vans, minibuses, GM-registered coaches and wheelchair-accessible taxis were already exempt from daily charges until 2023.