New docking stations planned for Santander Cycle Scheme after record-breaking use

Kieran Graves
June 30 2020, 12.25

New docking stations for London’s cycle hire scheme are to be installed in Clapham and Southwark this summer.

Transport for London data reveals May to have been the best in the hire scheme’s 10-year history with an increase of more than 114,000 hires to 1,120,620 in comparison to 2019.

This includes the highest ever recorded weekly figures of 362,925 hires between 25 and 31 May.

TfL head of cycle hire David Eddington said: “It’s fantastic to see more people than ever using our record-breaking Cycle scheme.

“We’re doing everything we can to support the scheme during this period of growth. Our new bikes and docking stations will make cycling even easier and more convenient.”

TfL data also shows the average length of hire roughly doubled compared to last year as UK coronavirus lockdown restrictions were eased.

April’s average hire time was reported at 36 minutes per journey compared to 17 in 2019 while May showed 35 minutes of use compared to 19 the year before.

New locations include three docking stations near Clapham Common and five in Southwark close to the River Thames.

A further six sites are due to be installed at various locations later this year.

These new docking stations will form part of Cycle Super Highway 7 from Clapham to central London and transect Cycleway 4.

There are currently more than 11,500 Santander bikes and 750 docking stations across 100 square km of the capital.

London Cycle Campaign infrastructure campaigner Simon Munk said the plans being made now are a trial for what can work in the future and that LCC hopes this will lead away from car use.

He said: “We hope this shift will be permanent because the current crisis is horrific enough, but the next one will be far worse – climate.

“We’ve seen shocks before, so we need action to make behavioural shifts stay. People simply won’t keep cycling if forced to do it in a rising tide of motor traffic.

“The changes we’ve seen on our streets will only stick with concerted action.”

The increased access to bikes, protected cycleways, and pedestrianised areas is part of the London Streetspace scheme aimed at decreasing traffic in the centre of London.

This scheme has been set-up to reduce carbon emissions and to help combat a predicted 80% decrease in public transport capacity due to social distancing.

It also hopes to make physical exercise and commuting safer in the city.

TfL will continue to provide free access to bikes for NHS staff, care workers and the police for journeys less than 30 minutes.

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