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Glasgow intends to open city-wide bike hire scheme

Expected for completion before the Commonwealth Games in 2014

Glasgow is to invest £1.3m on a city wide cycle hire scheme to appear before it becomes host to the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

The roll-out will see 150 bikes spread over 15 locations, with an ambition to have 400 bikes and 30 docking stations.

The operator role will go out to collective tender, while the city council will foot the £1.3 million capital costs.

The council said it expected it to be about £1.50 for two hours - presumably allowing users time to get up all those hills.

Council leader Gordon Matheson told the Scottish Herald: ""Cycling is cheap, keeps people fit and active, and is good for the environment. I am proud Glasgow is the first city in Scotland to launch such a scheme. Labour is committed to promoting cycling and I want Glasgow to be a city that is friendly to cyclists. This investment will provide an attractive option for people looking to travel quickly around the city. Creating a healthier, more active Glasgow is one of the key legacies of the Commonwealth Games. Bike-hire schemes are popular across Europe."

Unlike the London system, and more like one in Frankfurt, Germany, the bikes will lock to ordinary bike stands, and users will use their mobiles to obtain the code to the bike's lock.

Brian Devlin, the council's head of land services, said: "It would be the intention to implement the Mach scheme in spring 2014, prior to the start of the Commonwealth Games.

"It is recommended the council agrees to underwrite this project at this time to provide a level of certainty to private sector tenderers that the council is serious about this project."

But the city will be looking to Liverpool for advice, who have not yet managed to find an operating partner for a similar scheme, and Nottingham, where only one bike a day has been taken out in recent months.

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