Transport Secretary Andrew Adonis has launched a major £14m package to transform facilities for cyclists at rail stations and encourage healthier, greener travel. Although Chester will not become one of the new ‘Cycle Hubs’, local cyclists will benefit from Merseyrail’s inclusion in the new ‘Bike ‘n’ Ride’ scheme.
Over the next two years a series of measures, including ‘Cycle Hubs’ at 10 major rail stations and 10,000 extra cycle parking spaces across the country will be introduced by Government, Network Rail, Cycling England and train operators. The new cycle hubs will include extra cycle storage facilities, repair services, hire schemes and improved cycle access to and from the stations.
The projects announced include:
– £5m for fully supervised cycle hubs, offering a range of facilities for cyclists including secure covered parking, cycle hire, information, retail and repair at 10 stations. These include Leeds station (which will be completed by May next year) and London St Pancras, London Victoria, London Waterloo, Grimsby, Hull, Liverpool Lime Street, Scunthorpe, Sheffield and York (all to be opened within the next 2 years).
– £3m for over 4500 additional cycle park spaces at nearly 350 stations across the country, including Nottingham, Stevenage, Cambridge, Exeter, Scarborough, Sunderland, Barrow-in-Furness, Crewe and Middlesbrough.
– £4m from Cycling England for four Train Operating Companies – Merseyrail, Northern Rail, South West Trains and Virgin Trains – to transform the cycling facilities up and down their network to become flagship ‘Bike ‘n’ Ride’ train operating companies.
– £2m which will improve cycle access at rail stations to ensure that bike users can get to and from the station conveniently and safely, and to improve cycle facilities across the rail network as opportunities are identified.
This announcement follows the Government’s commitment in June for £5m to be spent over the next two years to improve cycle storage facilities at up to ten major railway stations nationwide, including in London. Due to the quality of the response to this announcement, the funding has now been doubled to £10m.
The announcement of the ‘Bike ‘n’ Ride’ operating companies takes forward the recommendation from the Cycle Rail Task Force as a way to improve bike and rail integration.