People in Naenae have been getting out and about lately utilising the ‘Free Ride’ community bike sharing scheme which aims to get more people using bikes to get around Lower Hutt.

The brightly branded and geo-tracked Free Ride bikes are available to use at special bike racks outside the Naenae Clubhouse and Naenae Library for anyone to take and borrow to get around the city, returning them to the bike racks once finished.  With support from Greater Wellington Regional Council, free helmets are available from the Clubhouse and the Library and are required to be worn for each journey.  People can use the bikes knowing they can be locked up and kept safe with the help of ReBicycle who have provided bike locks as part of the Free Ride scheme.

Lily Chalmers, Naenae Clubhouse Coordinator says, “The last few weeks since we launched Free Ride, has been a wild ride, we have followed each bike on its journey across the city, some have come back and some we have had to track down and bring back home to their special rack.

We are still building knowledge with people that there is a free bike sharing scheme in Naenae and we would love to see them come and use it.

It’s exciting watching people cycle off and I’m still hugely passionate about our community of Naenae and getting more people riding bikes, more often.

We are continuing to understand the behaviours and transportation patterns of our riders so we can adapt and reshape the community bike sharing scheme so it is fit for purpose for everyone.

The future is bright and long-term we hope to incorporate different types of bikes as well as children’s bikes so that we can attract and accommodate all users.  Wouldn’t it be great to have bikes and bike racks all over the city that people could use and get around on, which is totally doable”.

Imagine if walking and cycling became the transport mode of choice for Lower Hutt, creating healthier people and a more sustainable city.