Swansea Labour party have congratulated Swansea University after they won the Santander bike share hire bid beating off competition from 23 other universities.
That list was whittled down to five in the final – Swansea, Birmingham, Brunel University London, Surrey and Portsmouth.
After a tense and hard fought race to the finishing line Swansea University raised the most funding, over its operating costs, of the 5 finalists.
Swansea University raised £100,210 – nearly double the original target of £53,178 with pledges coming in from 612 people.
Cllr Andrea Lewis, Cabinet Member for Housing, Energy and Building Services, City & County of Swansea Council said: “We’re delighted that the university has been successful in their bid to introduce this bike hire scheme to Swansea.
“As a Council we are fully committed to increasing greener and more environmentally friendly modes of transport.
“We are in the process of increasing our own fleet of electric vehicles, helping to lower our carbon footprint. This bike scheme will be instrumental in assisting us in our overall aims and that’s why we are fully behind this scheme.”
And Mark Thomas, Cabinet Member for Environment Services, added: “One key element in making cycling an attractive, alternative method of transport for people in Swansea is to ensure there is a good cycle network available. We have invested heavily in recent years, including upgrading links between the city centre and the new Swansea Bay Campus. This work will continue so that cycling can help us achieve our aims of lowering car congestion.”
The University has over 18,000 students who will benefit from the scheme which links its two campuses, but the initiative has also proven extremely popular amongst city businesses and residents alike with large numbers pledging their support during the crowdfunding campaign.
Professor Richard B Davies, Vice-Chancellor of Swansea University, said: “Winning the Santander Cycles University Challenge demonstrates the boldness, ambition, and “can do” attitude of Swansea University.
“However, we have had overwhelming support for the campaign, not just from the University Community, but also from across the City and beyond. The City and County of Swansea has been behind us all the way and we will be working closely with the local authority as we develop and grow the scheme.”