A new bike park has been unveiled by Aylesbury Garden Town at Hale Leys shopping centre. The bicycle racks, which can accommodate 20 bikes, are part of the Garden Town programme’s commitment to encourage more people to use sustainable transport for local journeys, rather than to take the car.

Over recent months, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, many more people have been using bicycles, with a positive effect on the environment and climate change. Keen to support this, Aylesbury Garden Town and the Hale Leys management team have created additional cycle parking in the heart of the town centre.

The cycle racks are located between the 146 Café outside seating area at Hale Leys and the top of the Exchange Street Car Park. They are already proving popular, as Hale Leys Centre Manager, John Watson, confirmed, “The first day that the cycle racks were installed people were making the most of them. The bike park offers users the opportunity to leave their bikes, securely stored together outside the shopping centre. We’re delighted to have worked with Aylesbury Garden Town to make this scheme happen, bringing more people to the town centre without increasing the traffic on the roads.”

In the Aylesbury Garden Town Masterplan, the aim is that by 2030, 50% of all journeys in Aylesbury will be more sustainable, ie walking or cycling instead of by car. More cycle storage is being rolled out in a number of places across the town, including new hydraulic racks at Aylesbury station.

Cllr Steve Bowles, Chair of the Aylesbury Garden Town Board and Buckinghamshire Council Cabinet Member for Town Centre Regeneration commented, “During lockdown we saw a big increase in cycling in Aylesbury and we really want to build on this momentum now and encourage people to use active travel as much as possible. We’re working on lots of new initiatives to help achieve this and it’s been great to provide this new cycle rack scheme, in partnership with Hale Leys, in an easy to access, central location for all visitors to the town.”

The cycle racks were designed and built by local company Bennet Construction and include complementary planters that give the scheme a ‘greener’ garden town feel.