'Novelty wears off' for Boris Johnson's bike hire scheme


The report says many docking stations spend 8 hours a day with no bikes in them

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A recent internal Transport for London report from September shows how the "novelty has worn off" for some users of Boris Johnson's bike hire scheme.

You can see some of the other highlights from the report here.

The crux of the problem seems to have been the members' keys, the call centre and yet again finding a docking station.

In fact the bike hire scheme in September polls lower in terms of satisfaction than any other form of transport in London.

The report said that in November 27 docking stations had no bikes in them for between six and eight hours a day

And it also says that most users are male (77%) and a quarter of them live outside the capital.

The mayor's office says a more recent survey of members from December shows they've corrected some of those problems and satisfaction has gone back up.

That later report from TfL is here.

Its ratings are still lower than everything else apart from riding your own bike in London.

The contractor Serco has also adopted a new way of distributing the bikes.

They're now using what they call a "village concept".

So bikes are redistributed amongst small clusters of docking stations.

Tom Edwards, Transport correspondent, London Article written by Tom Edwards Tom Edwards Transport correspondent, London

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  • rate this

    Comment number 1.

    It's still not at all clear how these bikes can be used - seems like an exclusive club for just a few. Plus docking stations are so few and far between outside of the centre...and has anyone noticed how many Boris Bike users tend to ride on the pavement?

  • rate this

    Comment number 2.

    The bikes are sluggish meaning u have to pedal very harder to move forward. This is because the wheels need greasing or something is catching against the wheels and slowing it down. It would seem that the programme to maintain the bikes is not as good as it could be, I'd guess to cut running costs. I find it un-surprising people are giving up when the bikes are often in a poor condition.


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