Longer life on two wheels

Longer life on two wheels

"Free ride for free burgers" in germany so far only for car drivers "only for car drivers". The ADFC wants to change that. Foto: Renate Granade auf Pixabay / Public Domain

Zero traffic fatalities as a goal: The General German Bicycle Club wants to get involved in the Bundestag election campaign. In the Corona crisis, cycling booms

The bicycle boom in this country would probably have been even worse if there were already a seamless network of cycle paths, as the German Bicycle Club (GDB) had called it. V. (ADFC) called for in an action plan presented Tuesday. For the fact that cyclists on many routes still have to get along with a threatening avalanche of cars in the back, this means of transportation is already amazingly popular.

While the automobile industry is being saved from a loss of importance with government aid and purchase premiums, the demand for bicycles has risen as if by itself in the wake of the Corona crisis in Germany and around the world – whether because of the risk of infection in public transportation or because of the forced abandonment of gyms and contact sports. If you want to buy a bicycle this year and maybe even have it for the summer, you have to hurry, because in many places the "bikes" scarce.

According to the German Bicycle Industry Association (ZIV), sales of bicycles and e-bikes in Germany in 2020 were 60.9 percent higher than the year before. 6.44 billion euros. 5.04 million units, 1.95 million of which were e-bikes, were sold – and presumably many old bikes were taken out of the cellar and renovated "renovated", because together with sales in the components and accessories sector, the total sales volume across all sales channels was almost ten billion euros.

Bicycle-friendly cities

In France, state subsidies of 50 euros were granted for bicycle repairs. At the beginning of the pandemic, the mayor of the French capital, Anne Hidalgo, accelerated the implementation of the plan to make Paris the cycling capital of Europe. 50 kilometers of additional pop-up bike lanes, initially created there to reduce bus and transit ridership to contain the infection, have now been permanently reallocated to cycling. Despite, or because of, its declaration of war on automobile transport and its announcement that it would be replaced by more than 83.parking spaces in the public street space, some 60,000 parking spaces will be.000 without replacement, Hidalgo was re-elected in June 2020 for a six-year term.

Denmark’s capital Copenhagen is also among the top ten cities in the "top ten" and, on the basis of Danish data, Professor Stefan Gossling from the Swedish University of Lund has calculated the benefits that this would bring, not only to the city, but also to the environment "only" for the environment and climate. Positive health effects and an increased life expectancy through regular cycling can also be observed – as long as risks caused by car drivers do not prevail.

"New interceptors for the road"

The ADFC therefore demands in its action plan "This is how #BicyclingCountry" also calls for a "new traffic lights for the road" – A fundamental reform of transport law and technical regulations in favor of the "Vision Zero" – i.e. of a "forgiving traffic system with as few deaths and injuries as possible". In order to improve traffic safety, a speed limit of 30 km/h should become the standard.

The closing of the gaps in the bicycle path network is to be stipulated in a federal-state treaty. The ADFC does not believe that the National Cycling Plan 3.0 adopted by the Grand Coalition is not sufficient – because the Road Traffic Act and Road Traffic Regulations in their current form block the bicycle-friendly transformation of cities, according to the criticism.

Municipalities had to be given the option of more easily creating bike lanes and protected bike lanes, and redesigning lanes and parking lots to do so, without having to justify it with traffic payments and accident data, the bike club demands. "It can’t be that municipalities have to fear a lawsuit if they make room for bicycle traffic", declared on Tuesday ADFC Vice Rebecca Peters.

"We are now actively involved in the Bundestag election campaign", Peters announced this evening in a panel discussion with Federal Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer (CSU). Scheuer, for whom speed limits are an irritant, explained with a view to the election campaign that he has a clear conscience "a clear conscience". In part, he agreed – and indirectly admitted that he had not achieved the maximum for cycling in this legislative period: "We need to set up a seamless bike lane infrastructure in Germany", he conceded. Apart from that, Scheuer agreed with the suggestion of Saarland Transport Minister Anke Rehlinger (SPD) that we should first start by, "write down where we are in agreement".

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