Staff news

Bike hire scheme wheels onto campus

The University is set to host several rental sites as part of Edinburgh’s new cycle hire scheme.

Due to launch in the summer, bikes will be available in locations around the University - including George Square, Bristo Square and King’s Buildings – and across the city centre.

Transport for Edinburgh (TfE), which runs the city’s buses and trams, signed the agreement with Serco, an international provider of public services, to deliver the project.

Key partner

Serco operates the London Cycle Hire Scheme and similar services in Oslo and Bergen, Norway.

The University has been a key partner in the scheme since its proposal a year ago.

Bikes will be provided by Pashley Cycles, Britain’s longest established cycle manufacturer.

Potential growth

The three-year agreement will begin with the installation of 200 manual cycles this summer, with a further 300 manual and 100 electric bikes added by April 2019. 

It is hoped that the scheme can grow incrementally, potentially up to 2000 bikes.

Designed for Edinburgh

The cycles will feature gears designed to suit Edinburgh and have been tested on the city’s streets by representatives from Edinburgh City Council, TfE, the University and bike charity Sustrans.

Individuals will be able to hire the bikes using a simple smartphone app, with flexible hire options.

The scheme’s cycles will be the first in the UK to feature an innovative hybrid lock. This allows for parking at docking stations as well as in designated dockless parking areas. This combination is aimed at minimising disruption for pedestrians.

Zero carbon

The University’s partnership builds on its recent Memorandum of Understanding with TfE and will also help engage the city’s other universities and colleges with the scheme.

Support for the scheme is part of the University’s recently announced plan to be zero carbon by 2040.

We are delighted to be an official partner in a scheme that will provide a cheap, healthy and fun way to explore our city. It is an initiative that is in line with our commitment to support our students, staff and visitors to travel by bike, to reduce environmental impact and to promote wellbeing. We are pleased to do our part in helping the City of Edinburgh Council meet its target of 15 per cent of Edinburgh residents cycling to work by 2020.

Professor Peter MathiesonThe University’s Vice-Chancellor and Principal