December 9 2013 Latest news:
Paul Geater and Lizzie Parry
Thursday, September 19, 2013
What’s good enough for Paris, Montreal and New York is good enough for us.
That is the cry today as Ipswich gets set to emulate London’s Boris Bike scheme, bringing a new cycle network to the town as part of a major revamp.
Pedalling the plans forward, town centre management team Ipswich Central is expected this evening to unveil proposals at a meeting of its members – businesses who pay a levy to operate the Business Improvement District company.
Emulating the successful scheme, which was launched by the Mayor of London Boris Johnson in 2010, six hubs could be created across Ipswich’s town centre to allow people to pick-up and drop off the bikes.
Cyclists would pre-book their ride and receive a special PIN number to allow them access to the bike.
The Star understands the bikes would be free to use for a set period of time before a charge is levied.
And to avoid the bikes disappearing, those behind the plans aim to have them micro-chipped to ensure they are easily traceable.
Backing the plans, Ipswich MP Ben Gummer said: “I think it is a brilliant idea and I really hope it happens.
“I use Boris bikes all the time when I am in London, it is cheap, it keeps you fit and often it is quicker than driving or getting public transport – they are incredibly convenient.”
“I would love to see Ipswich at the head of this, outside the capital, and I am really pleased people are thinking about it.
“It shows we are getting some momentum behind ambitious new ideas for our town.”
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, told The Star the scheme had led to a “cycling revolution” in the capital.
“Barclay’s Cycle Hire has helped make cycling a glorious and integral part of London’s transport network,” he said.
“It has led our cycling revolution and we are building on its success with a vast programme of improvements to encourage even more people on to two wheels – with superhighways, urban quietways for more cautious cyclists and turning some areas of our capital into mini-Hollands.”