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Coke Zero to sponsor Cork, Limerick and Galway bike schemes

Public Transport Minister Alan Kelly gave all the details this morning.

Dublin Bikes
Dublin Bikes
Image: James Horan/Photocall Ireland

Updated 11.50pm

THE DETAILS OF the Limerick, Cork and Galway public bike schemes have been announced – and Coke Zero has been named as the new sponsor.

The announcement was made by Public Transport Minister Alan Kelly, who was joined by the Mayors of Limerick and Cork and the Deputy Mayor of Cork City.

The roll out of the schemes is being made possible following an agreement by Coca-Cola Ireland to partner with the Department of Transport, Tourism & Sport, the NTA and the Cities of Cork, Galway and Limerick on this initiative which will be operational in July 2014.

Coke Zero Bikes

The bikes will be known as ‘Coke Zero Bikes’. Minister Alan Kelly described today as “a breakthrough day for cycling in Ireland”.

We would estimate that an additional 700,000 cycling trips will be taken per annum because of this scheme. This project has been over two years in the making.

The news follows a commitment in the programme for Government to examine the feasibility of such projects similar to the Dublin bike schemes in other cities.

Four companies entered the bidding process to be the sponsor, with Coca-Cola Ireland emerging successfully from the process.

Minister Kelly said: “The only way this scheme could work was if there was a private sector partner to support it.”

Now we will have one of the world’s best marketing companies, not only investing financially in the scheme but also actively engaged in cycling promotion and provision in Ireland. It is a major achievement, we had to think of an innovative way to make such a scheme attractive to a company such as Coca-Cola and I’m glad we did.

He added that cycling has grown in Dublin by 40 per cent since the advent of their bike scheme “and it would be great to have similar results in Cork, Limerick and Galway”.

Gerry Murphy, Chief Executive of the National Transport Authority said that the local authorities in the cities of Cork, Galway and Limerick are actively pursuing cycling and public transport improvements.

Jon Woods, General Manager of Coca-Cola Great Britain & Ireland said the company’s “aim is to help create a culture of cycling and to help have a positive impact on people’s lives”.

The bikes

Of the 700 bikes that will be available for hire, 315 are in Cork, 200 are in Limerick and 185 will be in Galway. There will be 31 docking stations in Cork, 23 stations in Limerick and 19 stations in Galway.

The overall cost of the scheme is approximately €4million capital investment, with €900,000 per year operating costs.

Coca-Cola Ireland will invest €3m over five years in the scheme. The capital investment will be provided through the NTA and the scheme will be named ‘Coke Zero Bikes’.

This branding will appear on bikes and associated infrastructure.

The NTA are currently in the process of tendering for companies to supply, install and maintain the bikes as part of the scheme. The tender process is expected to be completed by December 2013 and the bike schemes are set to become operational in summer of next year.

The Dublin Bikes scheme is one of the most successful bike share rental schemes in the world, and has had over two million journeys and in excess of 55,000 subscribers since it was launched in September 2009.

Read: Limerick bike scheme to be launched next autumn>

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