Edinburgh's Just Eat cycle hire scheme should not take precedence over potholes and other basic services – Helen Martin

The Just Eat cycle hire scheme has turned out to be a disaster, and this is not the time when we would all be happy with the council chucking in millions of pounds to keep it going.

Monday, 24th May 2021, 12:30 pm
The Just Eat cycle hire scheme should not be given millions that would be better spent on priorities like helping homeless people (Picture: Greg Macvean)

We all know these bikes are often “nicked” from their stands, or ditched and abandoned across the city. Serco which operates the bikes, is not up for another contract under the existing terms. It’s doomed.

It might be a good idea to allow local cycle businesses to take over cycle hire, as long as they are given a guarantee against theft and abandonment.

If they hired cycles for a day or a week and the customer paid, there would have to be a security contract. The customer could sign a form to commit returning on time, showing their debit card with another signed obligation that if they didn’t bring the cycle back, they agreed that the hire firm was due the total cost of the bike.

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Council chiefs may have to fork out millions to continue  Edinburgh's Just Eat c...

Is that legal to operate? I don’t know but if it was, it would create more business, more jobs, and mean the council didn’t have to the city’s millions to keep a cycle-hire scheme going.

Edinburgh Council seems to want to get involved in fancy projects, rather than providing essential services for residents.

It has accumulated huge debts while pursuing many of these projects, whether that’s hiring cycles, paying over £14 million on consultant fees, or anything else that costs our money .

Meanwhile we still have pot holes, dangerous ragged pavements, public litter bins not emptied, and not even enough accommodation for the homeless.

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