British Cycling is partnering with Mobike dockless bike share company to inspire two million more people to get on bikes. The Chinese bike share company recently launched in Manchester, with the cooperation of Transport for Greater Manchester, and there are plans for further roll-outs, including in Newcastle on Tyne and fourteen other cities.
The partnership with British Cycling aims to increase accessibility to the Mobike dockless bikes by supporting wide-ranging access to Mobike’s scheme across the UK.
British Cycling and Mobike plan to engage with local communities and businesses to encourage greater bike use. As the scheme expands, data collected from Mobike’s smart technology can also be used to incentivise and promote greater cycling behaviours among different demographics, said a joint statement from British Cycling and Mobike.
The statement added:
"Productive discussions are also taking place with local councils to ensure a smooth roll out of Mobike’s sustainable biking infrastructure and to develop solutions to address the unique needs of cities and towns."
Currently in over 180 cities around the world with over seven million bikes, Mobike reports over 100 million users.
British Cycling CEO Julie Harrington said:
“One of the biggest deterrents of getting on a bike is not having one. Not only will Mobike help provide bikes to people where they are needed and encourage them to rediscover their inner cyclist, but we will also get insights from Mobike’s smart technology which will help us understand cycling behaviours.”
Mobike's founder and president Weiwei Hu said:
“Mobike is more than just a bike sharing scheme. We want to help create eco-friendly cities, improve air quality, reduce traffic, and ultimately improve people’s quality of life. We are excited by what we can accomplish together. This collaboration will help us not only achieve this goal but also ensure the British people have the best cycling experience possible.”
Mobike currently operates in Manchester and Ealing. From October Mobike will also begin operating in Newcastle, where 1,000 bikes will initially be made available for people to use.
Previously on BikeBiz.com, one bike-share entrepreneur told us that dockless bike schemess "have the power to reshape cities."
Newcastle is the third in the UK to welcome a Mobike scheme, following Manchester in July and London in early September. The scheme will see an initial 1,000 orange and silver bikes roll out in the Newcastle City area at the beginning of October, with that number expected to increase, leveraging Mobike’s data analytics to observe demand for the scheme.
The Newcastle announcement is said to "showcase Mobike’s commitment to the UK, and its vision to become both an integral mode of transportation for the public, and an involved, long term partner for cities."
As with all of its partner cities, Mobike has worked in close collaboration with local councils to ensure a smooth launch of the scheme for the city and its inhabitants. Northumbria University has already voiced its support for the scheme and will be hosting a number of Mobike hotspots on its campus, for students and staff to use.
Steve Pyer, UK General Manager for Mobike, said: “We are once again launching in a city where there is a real commitment to get people on bikes. Newcastle’s commitment to creating a safe and inclusive cycling culture made the city a natural place for the next step of Mobike’s UK expansion.
"We look forward to welcoming the Newcastle people to our growing Mobiker base, and to working with them and the city to take advantage of all of the scheme’s benefits. As Mobike continues to become available across the UK, our commitment to increase the amount of people making a healthier, eco-friendly transport choice has never been stronger.”
Cllr Arlene Ainsley, Cabinet Member for Transport and Air Quality at Newcastle City Council commented: “We are delighted to welcome Mobike to Newcastle. This is an innovative and exciting scheme, which has a proven track record, not only in Manchester and London but in cities around the world. By making bikes available and ready for use in a range of locations in the city, this initiative will bring new opportunities for more people to cycle, helping to reduce car journeys, which contribute to congestion and poor air quality.
"If we are to achieve real improvements in our city, in terms of making travel easier, safer and less polluting, then we need people to think about how they travel and, where possible, choose alternatives to the car. We believe that the launch of Mobike in Newcastle will enable more people to make that choice.”