| 9°C Dublin

Dublin city bike scheme passes six million mark

THE capital's public bike-hire scheme has enjoyed a record-breaking year, with more than 1.5 million journeys taken in the past 12 months.

The busiest day ever for Dublinbikes was in October, when almost 7,000 journeys were recorded in a 24-hour period.

With an average of 4,675 trips a day, it is becoming a serious rival to public transport providers.

A Dublin City Council spokesman said: "October seems to be particularly busy.

"This may well be due to students returning after the summer break."

Figures show the bike rental scheme passed the six million mark this year.

LAUNCHED

The total number of journeys taken since it was launched in 2009 was recently given as 6,037,199.

"Dublinbikes is provided by outdoor advertisers JCDecaux at an estimated cost of €26m over 15 years," said the spokesman.

"There is no cost to Dublin City Council."

Latest figures show the scheme has 36,636 long-term subscribers and 10,266 short-term ones.

In the year to the end of November, 1,519,671 journeys averaging 20 minutes were made.

Just over 95pc were under 30 minutes and so cost nothing.

On October 8, 6,973 journeys were made, beating the previous busiest day – October 13, 2011 – when 6,838 journeys were recorded.

An additional 50 bikes were available for commuters at the end of November as part of an expansion.

Six new stations were opened in recent weeks, the first of 58 that will be in operation by July.

The €35m expansion programme will see the scheme spread west from the city centre towards Heuston Station and east farther into the Docklands.

The system costs €1.9m a year to operate and is funded by subscription fees from users.

The cost of membership recently increased to help pay for the expansion.

CHEAPER

A one-year membership is now €20, while a three-day membership costs €5. The city council and JCDecaux announced the changes last month.

The original scheme had 450 bikes operating from 40 stations.

By July, it will have grown to 1,500 bikes at more than 100 locations.

Justifying the subscription price hike, the council pointed out that the scheme remains cheaper than its counterparts in Lyon (€25), Paris (€29), Seville (€31) and London (€107).

The council said the expansion is not being funded by JCDecaux but by a combination of contributions from the National Transport Authority the council, membership fees and commercial sponsorship.

comurphy@herald.ie


Privacy