Greater Manchester gears up for cycling revolution
5 July 2011 press release from Transport for Greater Manchester
Greater Manchester’s leaders are celebrating after securing £4.9 million of Government funding for a new project that will kickstart a revolution in cycling in the region.
Transport for Greater Manchester, and its local authority partners, will use the Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF) investment to launch a new project that will make cycling to work a more realistic option in a number of key commuter destinations.
The Greater Manchester Commuter Cycle Project, designed to increase the number of people cycling to work, will provide almost 650 secure cycle parking spaces at a series of new cycle centres across Greater Manchester, and a further 450 spaces at a number of new cycle compounds.
Alongside this, a programme of local cycle information and training will also be offered to break through the barriers that currently hold people back from commuting by bike.
A specific “Bike Back to Work” scheme will also be launched, reflecting the importance of helping more local people to get back into work. This will offer people who are looking to find work the chance to borrow a bike for a trial period to help extend the distance that they can travel to a job.
Councillor Andrew Fender, Chair of the Transport for Greater Manchester Committee, said: “This project has been developed to have the biggest impact possible on both increasing active travel and securing wider economic, social and environmental benefits, so I’m delighted that our bid has been successful.
“There is strong evidence to support the introduction of this scheme in Greater Manchester, where about two per cent of employees currently cycle to work, compared to a national average of three per cent.
“Our research has found that in towns where there has been a concerted effort to invest in the right facilities, levels of commuter cycling have exceeded four per cent – so there is definitely scope for improvement and I firmly believe that our scheme will achieve that.”
Each Cycle Centre will have covered, secure cycle parking, as well as lockers, toilets, and shower and changing cubicles. It is intended that they will be operated on a membership basis and accessed via a swipe card system.
They will be provided through a combination of newly built centres and re-fitting existing commercial units.
The cycle compounds will provide enclosed, secure cycle parking and lockers suitable for storing equipment like cycle helmets and wet weather clothing. They will serve commuter cyclists travelling shorter distances.
Cycle centres are proposed in the following locations: Ashton Pool; Piccadilly Gardens; Manchester Arndale Centre; MediaCityUK; Regional Centre (location to be finalised); Altrincham Interchange; Bolton Interchange.
Cycle compounds sites have been identified in the following locations: Bury Interchange; Stockport bus station; Sale town centre; Wigan stations; Rochdale station; Oldham town centre.
A full four-year delivery programme for the Greater Manchester Commuter Cycle Project will now be developed following confirmation of the LSTF support.
Media contact: Joel Sawyer on 0161 244 1055 or email email@example.com
Notes to Editors
1. Transport for Greater Manchester is the new name for Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive (GMPTE).
2. Transport for Greater Manchester Committee is a Joint Committee of the Greater Manchester Combined Authority and the ten district authorities of Greater Manchester. It undertakes much of the work previously undertaken by the Greater Manchester Integrated Transport Authority (GMITA) which was abolished on 1 April, and advises the Combined Authority on transport policy.
3. Transport polices that affect the ten districts of Greater Manchester are set by the Combined Authority, which came into being on 1 April 2011.
4. Transport for Greater Manchester is an executive body of the Greater Manchester Combined Authority.
5. The LSTF is a £560m national resource that has been established by the Department for Transport to support low carbon travel solutions that support local economies.