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"More space for bicycles"

Second session of the Parliamentary Circle on Cycling

Konstituierende Sitzung des Parlamentskreises Fahrrad
Konstituierende Sitzung des Parlamentskreises Fahrrad © Gero Storjohann

"More space for bicycles" - Second session of the Parliamentary Circle on Cycling

The second session of the Parliamentary Circle on Cycling took place on 11 April 2019 under the motto "More Space for Bicycles". Gero Storjohann, CDU member of the Bundestag, opened the second session together with his parliamentary colleagues from the other parliamentary groups.

The Parliamentary Circle on Cycling underlines the importance of cycling for modern and urban mobility in Germany. It currently has 46 members from all parliamentary groups and was founded on the initiative of Gero Storjohann in October 2018.

The central lecture of the second session was given by Burkhard Stork, Federal Managing Director of the ADFC, on the topic "More space for bicycles – making mobility transition successful".

The ADFC stands for everyday cycling and bicycle tourism and has set itself the goal of getting more people on their bikes more frequently, longer and with more fun. Every two years, the ADFC conducts the world's largest survey on cycling climate with the ADFC Bicycle Climate Test.

Mobility transition the declared goal of the ADFC: "We want to increase the share of bicycles in the inner-city distances up to 40 percent of the national average by 2025." This goal is supported by the members of the Parliamentary Circle on Cycling.

Burkhard Stork explained in his lecture that modal shift towards cycling has high potential, especially for traffic in urban agglomerations. Nearly 40 percent of the distances travelled there are less than 2 km long and the average travel speed in Berlin, for example, is only 15.5 km/h.

On the occasion of the presentation of the results of the ADFC Bicycle Climate Test on 9 April 2019 Federal Minister of Transport, Andreas Scheuer (CDU), declared: "If those who cycle in the Invalidenstrasse [an inner city street nearby the Ministry] all drove by car, we would already have the traffic collapse here. The bike allows more mobility with less car traffic".

The bicycle also offers potential for journeys to work, Stork continued: "56 percent of all travels to work in Germany are under 10 km long, 37 percent even under 5 km. This is an ideal distance for cycling. "

However, getting more people enthusiastic about switching from cars to bicycles will only succeed if the conditions allow a fear-free and relaxed cycling.

The political course for this was discussed by the participants:

  • Expansion of urban infrastructure: cycle path networks
  • Cycle highways and other comfort connections for longer distances
  • Massive expansion of bicycle parking
  • Legal adaptations

Burkhard Stork believes that many of these measures can be implemented by 2030. Numerous cities in the USA, France, Spain, China, Australia or Canada have already demonstrated the massive expansion of cycle path networks in a short period of time. Although the cycle highway program requires a longer lead time, a bicycle parking program can be realized much faster.