Transport for Greater Manchester launches Bee Network cycle scheme

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The 24-hour Bee Network cycle hire scheme in Greater Manchester launched last week along Oxford Road and at the University of Salford.

The scheme offers both traditional bikes and e-bikes and is being run by shared micromobility operator Beryl.

A previous scheme in Manchester managed by Mobike was ended in 2018 due to vandalism, resulting in Bee Network bikes being required to be parked in docking stations at the end of each journey.

The scheme opened on Oxford Road last Thursday and will be expanded into other parts of the city by next year.

An initial 120 bikes have been deployed, with the scheme set to expand to 1,500 devices by June 2022, 300 of which will be e-bikes.

Both types of bikes can be rented through the Beryl app: pedal bikes cost 50p to unlock and then 5p per minute while the e-bikes cost £1 to unlock and 10p per minute.

“Bee Network Cycle Hire is a big part of our vision for an integrated transport network,” said Greater Manchester Transport Commissioner Chris Boardman.

“Having easy, affordable access to a bike is central to the transport offer in most modern city-regions globally, so bikes are easily accessible for local trips. I am delighted that we are now able to offer this option in Greater Manchester.”

Beryl CEO Philip Ellis added: “We’re delighted that our experience and innovation is playing an important role in helping shape Greater Manchester’s impressive vision for a cleaner, more sustainable and joined-up transport network.

“The launch of this next phase of the scheme is really exciting and will open up the chance for many more people to take advantage of our bikes, which provide an affordable, safe and fun alternative to car travel. Oxford Road has some of the region’s best cycling infrastructure so why not download the app, give the bikes a try and play a part in helping to reduce congestion and carbon emissions.”

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