A new website has been launched today as part of an exciting programme to provide new ways for people to move around Plymouth.
Connect Plymouth will officially launch on March 21, but ahead of this date people are being invited to check out Home | Connect Plymouth to see what facilities will be near their home and where they work or play.
By the end of the installation phase, Connect Plymouth will see 500 electric bikes for hire at over 90 locations, 300 fast and rapid electric vehicle chargers in 50 locations and an electric car club across the city.
The ground work needed for docking stations and charging points is already underway in a number of locations. Council staff have been road-testing electric bikes, for instance, from Ballard House and work is currently ongoing at Manadon Sports Hub in St Peters Road, which is one of the first sites to get infrastructure installed.
Other preparation work involves electricity cable installation, parking bay marking and in some cases, changes to kerbs.
The new Connect Plymouth components – the e-bikes, the car hire and charge points – are designed to be integrated with existing public travel including ferries, walking and cycling routes and the Connect Plymouth website not only has a map of planned facility locations but links to journey planners and to the companies who run the schemes.
Councillor Jonathan Drean, Cabinet Member for Transport said: “We’re really excited about Connect Plymouth as it will offer greener, more sustainable travel right across the city.
“The scheme is all about making sustainable transport easier and more attractive for the people of Plymouth to use. With the official launch date in sight, we wanted people to check out the map so that they can get a sense of what’s on offer near them.
“We have committed to reducing carbon emissions and to greener travel as part of our Climate Emergency Action Plan and we want Connect Plymouth to play a big part in helping to change people’s habits and to get greener on the go.”
Last year the Council awarded contracts to Co Cars, the on-demand, zero and low emission car club to run their fleet in the city. Beryl Bikes are on board with a 500-strong fleet of electric bikes for hire to be located across the city. When fully operational, there will be an additional 300 parking bays across the city with electric vehicle charge points provided by Wenea.
Connect Plymouth is the new name for the network of facilities – which were formerly called mobility hubs. It is part of the Department of Transport’s Transforming Cities Fund, which aims to change people’s travel habits by making it as easy as possible for people to choose low carbon options to get about.
In March 2020 the Council received £51.2m capital funding from the Transforming Cities Fund. This builds upon the £7.6m previously awarded in 2019.