Syv Fjell Sykkel

"Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race." — H.G. Wells

Thursday, February 10, 2011

RidingResource: Copenhagen

Our friends over at (I suppose I cant actually call them friends as I dont know them beyond the warming glow of my 45inch plasma screen from which I ”curate” this ”epic” bicycle blog, but as G Fisher  said before The Trek Bicycle Company sucked out his soul and made him exclusively limited edition, ”Anyone who rides a bike is a friend of mine”) have been on it big time sharing the incredible tale of the cleansing of a car sick city.
40 years ago the Danish capital was a grey pigeon in a dirty inner city park full of grey pigeons when it came to bicycle friendliness and use. Now Copenhagen can gloat of having one of the most bicycle engaged populations in the world with 37 % of commuters crossing into the city each day by bicycle and 55 % of commuters travelling by bicycle within the city proper. These means that roughly 500 000 citizens choose their bicycle as their weapon of mass transit every day cycling a combined 1.2 million kilometers!
Copenhagenize is driven by the notion that "Copenhagenizing" is possible anywhere and One More Bicycle is of the conviction that Bergen Norway is no exception.
Copenhagen has gained its bicycle friendly status through a focused planning program with fast, safe and pleasant bicycle transportation as the goal. Note that Copenhagens bicycle friendly goals were not driven by environmental incentives alone, but also for the better of society, for the people who travel in the city daily. Copenhagen has been used as an example for the New York City Department of Transportation in their efforts to adopt similar bike lanes and bicycle infrastructure as Copenhagen. The city has even been recognised by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) for their efforts and has been chosen by this highest governing body of competitive cycling as its first official Bike City. Copenhagen is repeatedly recognized as one of the best cities in the world to live in as well as one of the worlds most environmentally friendly. The best part? They still are not content! By 2015 their goal is to have a minimum of 50% of all trips made to work and school by bicycle, reduce cycling injuries in traffic by half and that a minimum of 80% of Copenhagen bicycle users should feel safe riding in traffic!

Our situation in Bergen is far different from that of our nordic neighbours to the south. Bergen is currently ranked as the second worst bicycle city in Norway, Ă…lesund is ranked at the benchmark bottom. The city of Bergen has lofty plan of its own to climb the bicycle transportation ranking ladder. In the recent ”Bicycle Strategy for Bergen 2010 – 2019” report it was revealed that only 4% of Bergens citizens travel to work by bicycle, dispite 70% of working citizens living within 10 kilometers of their place of work. By 2019 the city hopes to drastically change this trend and have 10% of transportation to and from work occur by bicycle. They have also mandated to build 5 kilometers of bicycle routes each year during the period and have 1500 new ”bicycle parking spots” by 2019. Previously the City of Bergen has had a bicycle strategy in place, however only 37% of that goal was ever met, and we still only have 4% of citizens riding to work. In this country of continuos internal competition with the blinders on for what is going on in far more progressive nations, the report points to Stavanger as a worthy competitor (currently at 7% of commuters on bicycles and ranked at the 8th best bicycle city in Norway) as well as Trondheim (currently at 9% of commuters on bicycles and ranked at the 9th best bicycle city in Norway). We can do better! Lets ride!(

Copenhagen City of Cyclists from Copenhagen City of Cyclists on Vimeo.

No comments:

Post a Comment