February 9, 2015
That the title of this post has a certain truth in it is undisputable. Flexibility has always been a high good, not only because of our daily commute and work related trips, but also for all of our private movements. The ability to participate online in an event, even in our daily work (i.e. telecommuting), saves us a lot of travelling, but in spite of this, the necessity to travel in person will always be there.
Are we (stuck in) the traffic?
There are a few major modes of transport available for our everyday choice to accomplish a trip between A and B. However, one thing is common whether people drive a car, use public transportation, make their way by bicycle or simply walk: A certain dissatisfaction by people using those modes is always noticeable. You might recall such situations when you got stuck in the traffic jam with your car or an unabashed biker nearly hit you, the pedestrian, while both of you used the shared (walk – cycle) pathway. Many of those dissatisfactions are justified by circumstances and some are even justified by scientific evidence. The author of this blog post takes a closer look on the space which is given to different modes of transport in three international cities.
What can ‘sustainability’ bring?
Sustainable mobility is one of the important pillars in Horizon 2020, the EU Research and Innovation Framework Programme in 2014-2020. Other funds like EUREKA clusters, Joint Programming Initiatives (JPI) and Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) are also available to boost sustainable transport all over Europe. But some of you might have actually wondered what the practical value of past and present sustainable mobility projects is and if it really changed conditions for us as the recipients!
The sector of cycling certainly takes only a small portion within the entire sustainable mobility range. Yet, it is a very popular element when it comes to changing conditions and making (urban) passenger transport more sustainable. Many projects have been implemented and efforts have been taken in Europe and all around the world by local authorities, private institutions and voluntary associations to improve cycling conditions and engage people in cycling. Below you will find two examples among a multitude of past and present projects in the sector:
- The EU project Catch MR which was undertaken back in 2012 has led to significant improvements regarding the cycling infrastructure in and around the city of Budapest.
- Active sustainable mobility policies from the city of Koprivnica under the EU CIVITAS initiative has yield great support of the local society for cycling and walking.
Designed for all of us
Now it’s our turn to respond to such kinds of projects and share those endeavours. I am sure that if we look around in our village, town or city we will find (at least sections of) suitable cycling paths and/or infrastructure. Why not considering such sections for a bicycle ride and trying to integrate them into one of our trips? Cycling is not only beneficial for a more pleasant and liveable environment but it brings about very attractive health benefits as well.
Author : Rita Balazs