Saturday, November 30, 2013

Mobility management: The smart way to sustainable mobility

Mobility management, often called ‘smartmobility’,is acost-effective instrument for bringing mobility and transport more in line with sustainability. It is complementary to technology and infrastructure measures and it is the additional key needed to achieve sustainable mobility on the local, national and European levels. Therefore current budget cuts should not endanger measures and solutions for sustainable mobility. On the contrary the need for developing and implementing cost-effective measures like mobility management is increasing. It is urgent that we solve the widevariety of sustainability problems caused by transport, particularly environmental, health and social burdens to our citizens. Moreover we need to shift the current unbalanced modal split and decrease the enormous dependency of today’s transport on fossil fuels, which result in high economic costs. The concept of ‘mobility management’ has evolved from these concerns: it is the smart management of mobility needs. Mobility management is a relatively new approach, still in its early stages, but nonetheless developing rapidly in an increasing number of European countries. You can download this  insightful EPOMM book here and watch the CiViTAS MIMOSA video on the same issue below.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Crashes with trucks and vans are mostly caused by the driving style of the drivers.

That is not what Bicycle Dutch thinks, but what is stated on a site of the Dutch national Government. It is clear who the Dutch Government thinks is responsible for these crashes. If you cycle straight-on in the Netherlands, you always have priority over turning trucks. This is the basic rule of priority. But it often happens that drivers of HGVs miss people cycling to their right (legally undertaking the truck or on a cycle path) and that can lead to a so-called “right hook” where a cyclist is crushed by the truck turning right. Because of the nature of the two road users, one with a huge mass and one who is completely unprotected, the consequences of such a crash are very severe, often deadly for the person on a bicycle.Two men on their bicycles wait for a red light while a truck driver makes a right turn. Separate green phases and separate cycling infrastructure makes this safe in the Netherlands. According to that same site by the Dutch Government there are some ways to decrease the number of these particular crashes: “Vehicles can be made safer and the driving style of the drivers can be improved. But infrastructure can be improved as well. HGVs can be banned from urban areas and in city centres deliveries can be allowed only in specific time windows.”

Cycling and Trucks in The Netherlands

Sunday, November 24, 2013

European Cycling Challenge

Bologna challenges Italian and European cities on a cycling contest in May, 2014. The first edition of the European Cycling Challenge was held in 2012, when the Municipality of Bologna launched a challenge at European level in which participating cities competed to measure which city would have covered more kilometers by bike in May. The goal of the challenge, in addition to the fun that didn’t fall short!, was to sensitise people to use bicycles for their commuting, instead of other pollutant vehicles. The participating teams were directly managed by local government, which provided greater value to the initiative and ensured a remarkable visibility. In the first edition, 715 cyclists in 7 teams – including Barcelona and Tallinn – challenged each other, cycling a total of 90,000 km. In 2013 Bologna re-launched the challenge and achieved a result better than expected: 12 participating cities, 3,067 cyclists and 313,000 km cycled ( At the end of the challenge every city organizes a local public event to reward their cyclists. The prizes, all related to the world of urban cycling were purchased by the city or offered by bike shops or large retail stores of sporting goods in exchange for visibility among the participants in the challenge. Bologna is now launching the European Cycling Challenge – 2014 edition, and some cities have already expressed their willingness to join the challenge next May.


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Safety in numbers becomes reality for New York

To many, the ingredients for New York City’s bike-share program suggested a sort of sadistic alchemy. Start with notoriously unforgiving traffic. Add thousands of bicycles along the city’s most congested corridors. And see how perhaps the world’s least understanding drivers would cope with the new additions. And one more thing: Many of the cyclists would be helmetless novices — or worse, tourists — careening into and out of lanes with the whimsy of a youngster pedaling through a suburb. As of Monday, though, after more than five months and five million trips, none of the program’s riders have been killed on the bikes. About two dozen injuries, most of them minor, have been reported. Last year, according to the city’s Transportation Department, 18 cyclists were killed in car crashes from January through October, compared with 10 so far this year, though citywide, cyclist injuries have remained consistent. There was one cyclist death this year in the neighborhoods served by the bike-share program, in parts of Manhattan and Brooklyn, though the cyclist was not riding a Citi Bike. Over the same period last year, there were two bike deaths in these areas. Read on in NYT.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Sparkling Cycle Path

The Eindhoven region will receive the first innovative bicycle path in the Netherlands. The 600 metres long bicycle path runs where Vincent van Gogh lived from 1883 to 1885 and will have a unique design comprising thousands of sparkling stones designed by artist Daan Roosegaarde. The bicycle path will be designed by Studio Roosegaarde and Heijmans and is part of a joint venture between the municipality of Eindhoven, Van Gogh Brabant, Vrijetijdshuis Brabant, Eindhoven 365 and Routebureau Brabant. The light stones will be used to create patterns in the path that will charge during the day and emit light during the evening. This creates an interplay of light and poetry. The design this way provides a modern interpretation to Vincent van Gogh. Cultural heritage and innovation merge in this new, public landscape. The first impressions were presented during the symposium ‘Leading in Leisure’ on 24 October, an initiative of the Province of Noord-Brabant and part of the Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven. Read on here.