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Dublin bikes set to triple in 14 months as annual fee doubles

DUBLIN city councillors voted overwhelmingly last night to increase the city bike scheme.

Plans can now become a reality, as the number of bikes increases from 550 to 1,500 over the next 14 months.

The annual charge for regular users will be increased from €10 to €20 while the short-term subscriber fee for a three-day period will rise from €2 to €5.

A report by officials to the monthly council meeting said the bike scheme "is one of the most successful public bike rental schemes worldwide".

The expansion plan increases the number of bike stations from 44 to 102.

All the bike stations will still be mainly located between the Royal and Grand Canals, with the area covered expanding east towards the Docklands and west to Heuston train station and Kilmainham.

Two new stations are planned for St James's Hospital and the Guinness Storehouse.

It is hoped the entire city will be covered by 5,000 bikes within the space of the next four or five years.

The outdoor advertising firm JCDecaux, which has operated the scheme since 2009, will also operate the expanded scheme.

The council will be faced with a shortfall of €500,000 per year in operational costs.