Cycle Hire launches and early usage is reportedly high

Johnson: “Londoners have awoken to a new dawn for the bicycle.”

Boris Johnson has this morning launched the Barclays-sponsored London Cycle Hire, telling the media "Londoners have awoken to a new dawn for the bicycle."

"Overnight racks have been filled with thousands of gleaming machines that will transform the look and feel of our streets and become as commonplace on our roads as black cabs and red bus," said Johnson.

Available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, the Capital’s newest form of public transport stretches from Notting Hill Gate to Wapping, and from Regents Park to Borough Market.

Londoners using the scheme can, from today, take a cycle from one of 315 docking stations based every 300m or so throughout the centre of the Capital, with a total of 5,000 bikes available.

Peter Hendy, Commissioner of Transport for London (TfL), said: "We expect this fantastic new scheme to generate up to 40,000 new cycle journeys every day in London as the Capital’s cycle revolution rolls on. 

"I have no doubt that Barclays Cycle Hire will change how people get around central London"

The internet is, of course, abuzz with talk of the bikes, the payment system and much more. A selection of the best articles and tweets can be found below:

London Cyclist has compiled a list of three great routes to try using the Cycle Hire.

London Blogger Tom Hall has already come up with several ‘silly ways to use the Cycle Hire’ – including a ‘flash mob style mass hiring’.

The Guardian’s Helen Pidd Tweeted: "Hmm. Just checked my bike hire statement. Cost me £6 to get from Waterloo to Kings X – though I did dawdle."

Johnson himself tweeted this Cycle Hire shot along with an announcement to his followers.

It also appears that not all Cycle Hire points are not yet active thanks to a few reported teething problems.

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