Urban cycling infrastructure: Jerusalem, Amsterdam and Helsinki

According to a European Commission study from the end of 2023 on the quality of life of Europeans from 83 cities in the EU, Great Britain, Norway, Switzerland, the Western Balkan countries and Turkey, 14% of respondents declared that they use a bicycle as one of the primary means of transport. The city where cycling is most popular is Groningen, the Netherlands – almost half of the respondents indicated cycling there as the main means of transport. At the opposite extreme is Rome, where only 5% of residents prefer cycling in city traffic. In cities outside the EU, cycling is above average popular, especially in Oslo, Tirana and Geneva.

How are European cities implementing the EU urban mobility framework for cycling? In December 2023, Amsterdam introduced a speed limit for motor vehicles of 30 km/h on 80% of its roads. In Paris, cycling increased by 166% thanks to political decisions, financing and the construction of appropriate infrastructure. Helsinki, meanwhile, is not just working towards making cycling fully accessible to people of all ages all year round but has set an ambitious goal to achieve a 20% share of bicycle traffic in urban transport by 2035. This bold vision is a call to action for other cities to follow suit.

Jerusalem is also developing cycling – from 2016 to 2023, over 80 of the 120 km of planned bicycle paths were put into use. Infrastructure development includes, among other things, connecting existing roads and overcoming topographic challenges. The solutions to Jerusalem’s hills’ problems are electric city bikes and a bicycle lift in the Givat Beit Hakerem district.

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