Go everywhere by bike. This is the goal. Succeeding is another story. But we try, more than at any other time of the year, these days. He’s almost running out of European Mobility Week which seeks to raise awareness of Sustainable Mobility as many people as possible. For the 2021 edition, the European Commission has chosen health and sustainable mobility as its main theme, which passes through an infinite number of declinations, all of which show an alternative idea of moving, especially in the city.
The data point to a record increase in sales during the period of the pandemic. According to Ancma, National association of cycle motorcycle accessories, between the European Union and the United Kingdom 22 million vehicles were sold in 2020. In Italy, two million bicycles were sold, between muscle and electric, in 2020 with an increase of 17% compared to 2019. Sales of traditional bikes are climbs by 14%, those with pedal assistance by 44%.
The problem is not the presence of bicycles, but safe roads on which to use them. In the Pnrr, 600 million have been allocated for cycle paths, 400 of which would be destined for tourist cycle paths.
However, cycling has increased. He says it Covid Lanes, Legambiente dossier of last December. In September 2020, two-wheeled journeys rose by 27.5% compared to the same month in 2019. After the first lockdown, 193 kilometers of new cycle paths were built. According to the estimates of the European Cyclists Federation, more than 2,300 km of new sections of cycle infrastructures have been announced, more than 1,000 km already built or in the pipeline. The investment across Europe is over one billion euros.
«All elements that on the whole», explains Giorgio Zampetti, general manager of Legambiente, “They can help discourage the use of cars, in which Italy holds the European record, and an increase in the so-called bike to work, making the country’s large urban centers finally able to compete with the great European capitals”.
The government’s plan to transform the country’s mobility involves investments of 61 billion, 56% of which in the South. This was explained by the Minister of Infrastructure and Sustainable Mobility, Enrico Giovannini, in an interview with SustainEconomy.24. «The first tranche of European funds, 25 billion, has arrived, but the Ministry is working on the entire investment package under our responsibility. I have already signed several decrees, shared with the Regions and local authorities, to allocate around 12 billion euros, starting with those of the complementary fund that goes hand in hand with European funding ».
For interventions on urban mobility, over 200 kilometers of new tram lines, subways and trolley buses will be built and 3,200 electric or hydrogen buses will be purchased for urban areas and 2,000 natural gas buses for extra-urban transport. «For the cities we are working on an ambitious plan of cycle lane to increase and encourage “soft mobility”, funded with 200 million euros. Projects have already started to connect railway stations to universities in 7 cities ».