council news

The Santander Community Bike Share Scheme

Santander Bike Scheme

It is an accepted fact of life that Mumbles frequently suffers from the problems caused by traffic congestion at weekends and school holidays, particularly in the summer. Accordingly, MCC are delighted to announce that the much publicised Santander Bike Scheme will now be expanded to incorporate one 20 station or two 10 station bike hubs adjoining the cycle path on Mumbles promenade.

Due to the university’s success in the UK wide Crowd Funding competition they have secured £100,000 to establish a network of bike hire hubs in the Swansea Bay Area. However, through a donation of £12,200 from MCC the scope of the network has been expanded to include an additional hub in Mumbles. Without this donation Mumbles would not have been part of the scheme. With a hub costing £20,000 to establish, MCC consider this excellent value for money and plays a part in the councils endeavour to alleviate traffic and improve the wellness of the population.

The Mumbles hub/s will now link up with others at the Civic Centre, the National Waterfront Museum, Fabian Way Park and Ride and the two university campuses’ at Singleton and Bay. The scheme will initially involve 110 bike stations and 60 bikes which can be used for as short a hire period as 30 minutes for a single journey into Mumbles from the city centre or vice versa, for one hour or even all day. The bikes will be available for hire 24 hours a day for 365 days a year, with hire costs starting from as little as 50p for 30 minutes. The finance for the scheme includes all the revenue costs for maintaining the bikes – which are expected to have a 5-7 year lifespan – and transporting the bikes to where demand is highest on a continuous basis.
Oystermouth Community Councillors Carwyn Thomas and Tim Bull championed the scheme to their fellow councillors and hope it will be the start of changing attitudes to the current dependence on private cars for leisure journeys in and out of Mumbles. They point out that:

“The Swansea Bay Cycle path provides a safe and enjoyable link to Mumbles, have a stroll round the many excellent shops, coffee bars, cafes and restaurants Mumbles has to offer or just spend the day enjoying the castle grounds, beaches and sea, then cycle back. Parking bikes take up very little space compared to cars, for which there is limited space in Mumbles, and bikes cause absolutely no pollution and help users keep fit and healthy!”

This project also complements another MCC environmentally friendly project for next year that will see drinking water fountains provided on the promenade so passers by can refill water bottles rather than buying new ones and discarding the old bottles, the recycling of which is both expensive and takes up landfill.