Micro-mobility operator Bolt is to launch its first Irish electric bike service in Sligo town next month.
The 100-bike pilot scheme will trial a range of parking options for the e-bikes, which aim to provide ease of use for cyclists and ensure the scheme is mindful of pedestrians and other road users.
The launch in Sligo comes as part of a wider push for Bolt to deploy 16,000 e-bikes across Europe in this year, following a recent fundraise.
The company operates a range of services including e-bikes, e-scooters, ride-hailing and car clubs for over 100 million people across 170 cities.
It currently operates ride-hailing taxi services in Dublin and Cork and is seeking to bring electric bikes and, in time, electric scooters to cities and towns across Ireland.
"Sligo is an ideal town in which to launch Bolt's e-bikes in Ireland; with the growing university, recently increased investment in cycling infrastructure and real public support for making sustainable choices," said Aisling Dunne, Head of Public Policy for Ireland at Bolt.
"We’re excited to support a forward-thinking council determined to provide alternatives to private car use," she added.
Bolt research suggests that only one in ten Irish car owners currently see themselves being able to give up their private vehicle.
According to Sligo’s Vision 2030 survey, cycling constituted only 1% of transport for those attending education or work and only 2% in Sligo Town.
"We need to do more to help people make that change for the many short and accessible journeys made every day," said Ms Dunne.
"Alternative options like electric bikes and shared micro-mobility services such as electric scooters are a crucial part of forming an ecosystem, which will change habits, improve air quality and translate into less congestion," she added.
The Cathaoirleach of Sligo County Council, Councillor Paul Taylor, said he believes this pilot scheme will enable the council to promote the many benefits of sustainable travel to the people of County Sligo.