A public bike rental scheme will be vital to Waterford's plans to become carbon neutral, according to Metropolitan Mayor of Waterford Cllr. Seamus Ryan.
The new service will see 14 stations delivered across the city over the coming months.
A consultation process launched by the National Transport Authority and Waterford Council around locations for stations for the bike share scheme will last until Thursday (September 30).
The city bikes scheme has already been successfully launched in Cork, Galway and Limerick and the NTA hope the Waterford scheme will be just as successful. A similar scheme, supported by NTA was established by Dublin City Council in 2009.
Cllr Seamus Ryan says we need to reduce the number of cars on our roads:
"We're all aware that Waterford plans to become carbon neutral over the next year or two, that is really ambitious and something I support, but if we're serious about that we've got to be serious about the promotion of a bike rental scheme, the promotion of public transport and all of that because we have to reduce the amount of cars on our roads."
Fergus Galvin, Director of Services - Roads, Water & Environment - Waterford City and County Council welcomed the initiative:
“As part of Waterford’s aim to become carbon neutral by 2040, the introduction of the bike share scheme will greatly alter our mindset of over reliability on cars, which account for 35% of total emissions. Coupled with this, the bike share scheme will provide a low-cost, healthy and readily available mode of transport throughout the city.”
Cllr Ryan also called for more investment in cycling infrastructure around schools to make cycling safer:
"We need to make it safer for children to cycle to and from school and I would hope children would use these bikes, I don't see any reason why they can't."
TFI Bikes are a self-service bike rental service open to all from 14-years old. Stations are located through each city making it easy to get around on a TFI Bike, whether it is commuting to work and meetings or some sight-seeing.
TFI Bikes consists of stations with a terminal and stands for the bikes. The bikes are locked into the stands, when a bike is hired it is released by the system. On return, the bike is locked back into a stand at any station, and the hire is then completed.
An Annual Subscription is available for just €10/year. The first 30-minutes of each hire is at no charge, for longer hires a service charge applies. The fund will be administered for the Department of Transport by the National Transport Authority.
Members of the public can make their submissions at www.nationaltransport.ie/public-consultations.
Pic: Patrick Browne
Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. Joe Kelly, Minister for Transport, Environment, Climate and Communications Eamonn Ryan TD