UK shared transport charity CoMoUK has called for further dialogue between Westminster City Council and London’s e-bike operators, following the removal of bikes from the streets in central London.
Westminster City Council earlier this week began seizing dockless bicycles left strewn on roads and pavements across central London, following a spike in bikes being dumped across the city throughout the summer.
Westminster is reportedly seeing hundreds of dockless bikes abandoned in the middle of the pavement every day, creating a significant safety risk – particularly for disabled and elderly residents or visitors. The council said dockless bikes are regularly found blocking pedestrian crossings and obstructing the pavement.
CoMoUK said operators are ‘fully committed’ to working with Westminster to find a solution. It believes that a combination of designated and carriageway e-bike parking, funded by e-bike operators would help solve the current vehicle clustering issues in Westminster.
Antonia Roberts, deputy chief executive of CoMoUK, said: “Westminster has some of the worst air quality in the entire country, and shared e-bikes are a vital part of the solution to delivering the council’s Climate Action Plan.
“Bike share is a catalyst to re-engaging with cycling – supporting health and wellbeing, triggering sustainable travel behaviours, cutting car miles, and working alongside bike ownership.
“There is a firm willingness by operators to go to extra lengths to implement a scheme which works for all parties in Westminster, and they would welcome the opportunity to reach a solution with the council.”
A recent report by CoMoUK found that 34% of those using e-bikes said they were replacing car or taxi trips of more than five miles per week. CoMoUK is also working with TfL, London Councils, boroughs and operators to agree clear ways of working for bike share across a pan-London.