Innovation That Matters

London's new bike lanes, branded with Barclays blue

Mobility & Transport

Transport for London is investing a record GBP 111 million this year in initiatives designed to encourage and improve bicycling in London, and a sizable chunk of that money is going toward “cycle superhighways,” or dedicated cycle lanes into central London from the outer portions of the city. Other cities are taking similar steps, of course, given the increasing popularity of bicycling; what’s particularly interesting about this initiative, however, is that Barclays is heavily involved in the effort, lending the superhighways not just its brand name but even its corporate colour. Dubbed Barclays Cycle Superhighways, the new, Barclays-blue painted lanes are designed to provide cyclists with safer, faster and more direct journeys into the city. The new routes are clearly marked and easy to follow, thanks in part to new signs and road markings as well as information about journey times and links to other cycle routes. The first two such lanes have already launched–leading into the city from Merton and Barking, respectively–and 10 more will be introduced by 2015. In addition to reducing congestion and cutting emissions in the city, one of the goals behind the project is to increase cycling in London by 400 percent by 2025, compared with 2000 levels. Toward that end, Barclays has also branded a Cycle for Hire initiative within London, with 6,000 blue-emblazoned bicycles and 400 branded docking stations. A video on YouTube explains the cycle superhighways project in more detail. Much the way brands using Save Your Logo can align themselves with wildlife conservation for improved karma and corporate generosity, so Barclays’ effort will forever link its brand in Londoners’ minds with bicycling and sustainability. Time to brainstorm some like-minded ideas for *your* generous brand…? (Related: Bank-sponsored bike-sharing in Canada.) Update: Just discovered an independently launched social add-on to the Barclays scheme. In their words: “myLondonCycle is a social community built around the new Barclays Cycle Hire program in London. The goal is to bring even more fun into cycling with a little social game.” Spotted by: Hal M.



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