New funding for Govan community cycling initiative

New funding for Govan community cycling initiative

Nethan Street is one of the locations for the bike initiative (Image: Mast Architects)

Tenants and the wider community in Govan are in line for a major cycling boost to promote fitness and active travel.

Elderpark Housing and its partners have secured funding from Cycling Scotland for a trailblazing initiative to promote the benefits of cycling.

The funding will enable the housing association to install secure cycle storage and make landscaping improvements to back courts in six locations across Elderpark as well as provide bikes to tenants who would otherwise not have the opportunity to cycle. Potentially, hundreds of people are set to benefit from the initiative.

This is not the first time Elderpark Housing has demonstrated its commitment to cycling and the mental and physical health benefits it brings. The Association has worked closely with Cycling Scotland and Glasgow City Council to install secure cycle storage in other residences.

Interestingly, Cycling Scotland’s own research found many households don’t have somewhere safe to store their bikes, and that almost half of people living in social housing are unlikely to have bike storage.  This issue is felt more acutely in local authorities with the highest percentage of flats as a proportion of all residential properties – notably Glasgow at 72%.

Elderpark’s partners in the project are the Kinning Park Complex, Safety Awareness Glasgow and the national organisation for shared transport, CoMoUK.

Elderpark undertook a wide-ranging survey of its tenants to assess support for the project and the feedback was overwhelmingly positive.

Elderpark’s community regeneration officer Jonathan Giddings-Reid said: “This is further reminder of how deeply-engaged Elderpark Housing is within the community we serve. As a community-based housing association our role goes far beyond simply collecting the rent. The health of our tenants and the well-being of our neighbourhood remain vitally important.

“That’s why this funding from Cycling Scotland is so important. It allows us to develop cycling within our community as a lifestyle choice which brings health-giving benefits and an important eco-message, too.

“We have had an enthusiastic response from our tenants to what we are proposing and will be rolling out the initiative as soon as we can. We want to place on record on deep appreciation for the financial support from Cycling Scotland to make all this possible.”

A key focus of the project will be the creation of bike storage facilities in back courts coupled with security lighting and environmental improvements such as the creation of planters and seating. 

One of the locations selected is Elderpark’s development of homes at Nethan Street close to Govan Cross. These homes - not far from Elderpark’s offices in Golspie Street – were launched in 2021 and are a mix of apartments and terraced homes.

A further feature of the initiative is to encourage Elderpark staff to make use of bikes as they go about their work in the community.

Hugh Macgregor, Access to Storage programme manager at Cycling Scotland, said: “Cycling Scotland is pleased to be able to support this project and to work in partnership with Elderpark Housing to help residents access the benefits of cycling.

“Cycling is a healthy, cost-effective way of getting around, and providing fair access to bikes and somewhere safe to store them is essential if we’re to help more people travel by bike.”

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