A landmark building in Manchester is set to have a secure ‘cycle hub’ installed in its basement, which will provide parking for up to 200 bicycles, changing facilities and lockers. It is also hoped that the hub, which is planed under the Greater Manchester Commuter Cycle Project, could incorporate a retail outlet selling cycle accessories and providing a bicycle maintenance service.
According to the Manchester Evening News, plans for the cycle hub at the 30-storey City Tower in Piccadilly Gardens, owned by commercial property business Bruntwod, have been set out in a report compiled by the city’s transport bosses, although it does not appear to have been made public as yet on the Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) website.
The newspaper adds that the report states that “Positive discussions have taken place with cycle retailers regarding the retail unit with a view to the letting of this unit by the time the centre is opened,” which is scheduled to take place this summer.
Last year, TfGM successfully applied for £4.9 million of Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF) money which together with local authority and other funding will enable it to develop the Greater Manchester Commuter Cycle Project, aimed at making it easier for people to cycle to work.
The first phase of that initiative envisages more than 1,000 secure cycle parking spaces in 13 locations throughout Greater Manchester, with TfGM saying that access to the facilities would be via a swipe card, with membership available on an annual basis.
In November, confirming that planning applications had already been submitted relating to proposed facilities at Ashton Pool and Bury Interchange and that further LSTF finding was being sought, Councillor Andrew Fender, Chair of the TfGM Committee, said: "The Commuter Cycle Project is a very important first step on the path to achieving the ambitious aims covered by our full Local Sustainable Transport Fund bid, so I'm pleased we're making progress.
"These cycle hubs will provide the foundations for a real change in the way people think about cycling; they will help to break down some of the barriers - both real and perceived - that currently stop people from taking their bike to work."
The Manchester Evening News states that according to the latest report, such facilities are now planned for Rochdale, Trafford, Oldham, Stockport and Wigan, with its authors adding, “Development work has also been undertaken for a potential cycle hub at Media City and a facility at Spinningfields in Manchester city centre. Provision for a hub at the Arndale is also being considered.”
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.