LABOUR councillor Joe Leddin has called for the expansion of the public bike scheme to the suburbs.
The Coca-Cola sponsored scheme has been active in Limerick for the last eight months, and has proven to be a success.
But at the moment, bike hire is only available in the city centre, and its immediate surrounds.
Cllr Leddin says Limerick has been a “victim of its own success” in terms of this scheme, and wants it expanded to Raheen, Dooradoyle, the Ennis Road, Mayorstone and Castletroy.
“We are a victim of our own success, as people are saying ‘I live in Raheen, or work in the Regional Hospital, and I’d love to be able to avail of a bike relatively near my home or place of work’. Phase one has been up and running, and has been extremely successful. Let’s get ahead of the posse in terms of the other urban centres like Cork or Galway who were all successful,” said the city west member at the metropolitan district council meeting.
Fine Gael councillor Daniel Butler believes expanding the bike scheme would alleviate much of the traffic heading into the Raheen Industrial Estate.
And Fianna Fail councillor James Collins pointed out: “Our own bike scheme does not allow us to cycle from City Hall to County Hall. Imagine if someone wanted to cycle from one meeting to another - they couldn’t.”
He also said it would be great if Munster fans could cycle on these paid bikes out to Thomond Park.
Cllr Elena Secas, Labour, suggested Childers Road also be included because of the retail there.
However, the acting director of service for travel and transportation Vincent Murray said any expansion was a matter for the National Transport Authority (NTA)
Although the council assisted the NTA in its roll out, it is the latter which funded the project.