Micromobility operator Beryl has launched a brand new bike and e-bike hire scheme in Portsmouth, Southampton and the Isle of Wight.
Working with Solent Transport and its local authority partners, Beryl will deploy 200 pedal bikes and 230 e-bikes initially.
This will gradually build up to a fleet of more than 1,000 vehicles across the three areas by spring 2023.
Once the scheme is expanded, 90% of people living in the operating area will be within a five-minute walk of a hire bike.
“We are absolutely delighted to be able to launch the scheme in Portsmouth, Southampton and on the Isle of Wight and, in doing so, enable more people to take advantage of the excellent local cycling infrastructure,” said Beryl CEO and Co-Founder Philip Ellis.
“As with all our schemes, this has been designed to provide the best possible service for users by being delivered both in partnership with the local authority and in consultation with communities and key stakeholders.”
The scheme is funded by the Department for Transport (DfT) and is running as a trial as part of the Solent Future Transport Zone. It aims to help reduce congestion, improve air quality and inspire healthy, active travel choices across the Solent region.
In future, cargo bikes and adapted bikes will be added to the scheme to address all riders’ requirements.
Riders can hire a bike either through the Beryl app or Breeze, the new transport super-app developed by Solent Transport. This super-app lets you hire e-scooters and plan journeys on buses and trains across south Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.
Users can pay to suit different types of journeys – Pay-As-You-Ride (£1 unlock fee + 5p per minute or Minute Bundles (no unlock fee and bundles starting at 100 minutes for £5).
Councillor Lynne Stagg, Chair of the Solent Transport Joint Committee and Cabinet Member for Traffic and Transportation at Portsmouth City Council, said: “As we face a global climate emergency, it’s more important than ever that our residents have access to more sustainable ways to travel.
“Beryl Bikes by Breeze will not only help protect the natural environment but encourage people to get active and even save money at a time when fuel is so expensive.”