Manchester cycle project encourages commuters to ‘get on your bike’ to save the environment

By Felicity Robertson

In an attempt to make Manchester greener, a project is encouraging commuters to cycle to work instead of taking the car this week.

Transport for Greater Manchester, and local authority partners, are using a £4.9million grant from the Government’s Local Sustainable Transport Fund to fund the Greater Manchester Commuter Cycle Project.

The Commuter Cycle Project aims to provide more than 1000 secure parking spaces for bikes at various new cycle centres and cycle hubs across greater Manchester.

Plans so far have been submitted to Bury Council and Tameside council to place new cycle hubs at Ashton Pool, a minute’s walk from the town centre’s bus station and the future Metrolink line, as well as at Bury Interchange.

Councillor Andrew Fender, Chair of the TFGM Committee said: “These cycle hubs will provide the foundations for a real change in the way people think about cycling; they will help to break some of the barriers- both real and perceived- that currently stop people from taking their bike to work.”

The project hopes to encourage more people to become green and ditch their carbon footprint by allowing them to leave their bikes in secure locations with easy access to public transport.

Cycling has become increasingly popular in Manchester in recent years.

David Hawcross, a 39-year-old commuter from Marple, said he thinks it is a great way of getting around.

“It is healthy, good for the environment and reduces travel congestion,” he said.

The cycle hubs are aimed at short distance commuters and are designed to provide lockers that will be suitable for storing cycling equipment such as helmets and wet weather clothing.

The new facilities will be operated on a membership basis and CCTV will provide additional security. Access can be gained with a swipe card.

Further cycle facilities are planned for Altrincham, Bolton, Oldham, Rochdale, Stockport, Sale and Wigan, along with other locations in the regional centre.

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