File photo via Pixabay
A dockless bike sharing scheme could be on the way to Naas.
The proposition is being promoted by a new company known as Urbo , which says it wants to promote sustainable and integrated local transit, and yearly membership costs €30. Urbo is an Irish company with offices in London.
The system works by prospective users locating a bike where it was left by the last user, and this is done either by picking up the bike wherever it was left last or by locating it via an app. It allows users to hire a bike at inexpensive rates and then leave it at their destination.
Kildare County Council believes that the system could be used in the greater Naas area, notably Naas-Sallins, as a healthy, viable and cheaper alternative to driving. It could arrive in Naas next spring or summer.
Meanwhile, according to Urbo’s Paul Norton, it will be introduced to NUI Maynooth for students and staff travelling to and from the college, possibly by train, as well as between the North Campus and North Campus.
KCC official Evelyn Wright told a Naas Municipal District meeting last week that the council is interested in setting up a dockless bike sharing scheme but “we need to be clear about where the bikes will be”.
Ms Wright believes that many people using the Sallins rail station every day would avail of the scheme once it is set up. The scheme works by users opening an app on their smart phone and selecting a bike off the map or alternatively by walking up to a bike and scanning a code.
The app then sends the user a four-digit code which is typed into the specially fitted wheel lock on the rear of the bicycle. The user is then free to cycle the bike, with a journey of 30 minutes costing 50c. When the user finishes their journey, they simply click the lock back into place and park the bike on its side stand with no need to lock it to a railing. Technology means areas can be “geo fenced” so that bikes can only be used or locked in designated areas.