The Tauranga City Council purchased eBikes on behalf of 52 staff as part of a bulk order from ElectrifyNZ. Photo / File

An eBike initiative to get more staff cycling to work has won Tauranga City Council a national award.

The council won the Bikes at Work and School Award at the 2018 Bike to the Future Awards, run by the NZ Transport Agency.

The category recognised organisations that made a significant effort to encourage cycling.

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Last year the council was preparing to move the bulk of its staff from 2 Devonport Rd to a new building on the corner of Third Ave and Cameron Rd - a temporary home until a new civic administration building is built.

At the time between 40 and 60 council staff were regularly cycling to work.

The new building had restricted parking, so the council offered staff the opportunity to buy an e-bike through a purchase deal with national e-bike retailer electrify.nz

They expected maybe 15 would take them up on the offer, but 52 signed up.

The council now has 125 staff regularly cycling to work, about 20 per cent of its workforce.

Judges found the initiative was an "exemplar project" that set a standard for other organisations to follow to get more staff cycling to work.

Tauranga City Council was a joint winner of the category, along with the Tairāwhiti Bikes in Schools programme.