Transport for London and sponsor Santander have announced that e-bikes will be introduced to London’s cycle hire scheme from 12 September.
It says in July the scheme recorded its busiest month in its history, with more than 1.3 million hires across the month and now “to support the scheme’s continued success and financial sustainability”, TfL and Santander are introducing 500 e-bikes to its fleet, which use an electric motor to assist riders as they pedal.
They explain that the bikes are being introduced as part of a programme of work to modernise the cycle hire scheme, with funding agreed for the programme in 2020.
“The new e-bikes will be distributed across key central London locations and will enable even more Londoners to enjoy the benefits that cycling can bring, from improved health to cleaner air,” they say in a statement. “The new bikes will help to break down the barriers that stop some people from cycling, including fitness, age and journey length. E-bikes will be able to be docked at any of the scheme’s 800 docking stations, giving customers an easy and sustainable way of travelling across a large area of central and inner London.”
TfL will also be making changes to the Santander Cycles fare tariff from 12 September, to support the introduction of e-bikes and to secure continued investment in cycle hire, saying the changes will make charges for access more flexible and easier to understand for everyone.
There’ll be a new flat rate of £1.65 per 30-minute ride, replacing the existing daily access charge, which is £2 for unlimited rides of up to 30 minutes in a 24-hour period, with additional charges for rides over 30 minutes.
They’re also adding a new monthly membership option, costing £20 per month. The membership, which can be cancelled at any time, will allow customers unlimited 60-minute rides in the month. The annual membership will now offer unlimited 60-minute rides, instead of the unlimited 30-minute rides currently offered. The price of an annual membership will increase to £120.
E-bikes will initially be available to registered users only, for a fare of £3.30 per 30-minute ride or an additional fare of £1 per 60 minutes for monthly and annual members. The £1.65 new flat rate for customers who are not Santander Cycles members matches the price of a bus fare.
TfL has also confirmed that a number of new docking stations are set to open in the London Borough of Southwark later this year, the scheme’s first expansion since it was introduced to Bermondsey and Rotherhithe in 2019. The new docking stations will be located at Burgess Park Albany Road, South Bermondsey station, Clements Road, Harris Academy, Brandon Street, Crimscott Street and The Blue. The new docking stations will be built with funding from Southwark Council.
(Picture – TfL)