450 new dublin-bikes will be available on Dublin streets to Dubliners and visitors to the city from the morning of 13th September 2009.
They will be free to hire for the first 30 minutes of each journey. The bikes are supplied to the City as part of a contract that Dublin City Council signed with JCDecaux in 2006, that will also see public information campaigns, advertising and new signposting to city centre amenities.
The City Council awarded a 15-year contract to JCDecaux to provide 450 bicycles and maintain them at 40 separate locations in the city, to provide civic information panels to Dublin City Council for public information campaigns and to provide a 'way finding' signposting scheme to help give people directions to different amenities in the city.
The three elements are to be delivered in return for JCDecaux having the use of public space to erect advertising stations - each of which was subject to an individual planning application. Planning permission was granted for 72 advertising stations and 66 are in place. JCDecaux have also removed 100 existing billboards in the city, as part of the contract.
“We expect the bikes to be very popular and Dubliners and visitors to the city, alike, will benefit from the new directional signs to city centre amenities” - said John Tierney, Dublin City Manager. “The advertising stations have been in operation since September 2008 and have been used by Dublin City Council for a variety of public information campaigns - including litter reduction and water conservation.”
The advertising element of the scheme has become even more valuable to the City Council in the light of the directive from the Department of Finance that the Council should reduce its annual advertising spend by 50%. This scheme allows the City Council to advertise various services and projects without incurring any costs whatsoever.
Public information campaigns are already planned for as far ahead as August next year. The current value of the JCDecaux contract with the council - over 15 years - is:
- The dublinbikes cycle scheme € 26,791,000
- Communications System (Civic Information) €23,464,000
- Way finding System €4,106,000
It should be noted that the contract will be delivered at no risk to Dublin City Council. The council examined the provision of a bike scheme some 10 years ago, but did not proceed with the scheme due to prohibitive costs.