*Photo care of Rita Gemerts of RAYaction

World Cycling City Amsterdam

In an effort to create a healthy, accessible and attractive city, the City of Amsterdam is working with local residents to encourage higher cycling rates. Despite already high mode share in Amsterdam, some neighbourhoods still experience relatively low rates of cycling. According to Koen van ‘t Hof, Bicycle Program Manager for the Municipality, “We want to stimulate bicycle use with cycling initiatives by Amsterdam residents. Mobycon helped us draw up an assessment framework to assess which ideas of residents are eligible for funding.”

Mobycon organised two working sessions during which City departments and the Municipal Health Service took a joint effort to formulate the criteria for measures to encourage and stimulate bicycle use. “For example,” says Ven ‘t Hof, “it is important to let children experience the benefits of cycling from a young age and to involve their parents, as well. Residential initiatives can be aimed at, among other things, increasing cycling skills, making cycling attractive or bicycle repair.”

Based on the resulting criteria, districts throughout Amsterdam can make well-informed decisions about which cycling initiatives are likely to be successful for residents of the various neighbourhoods and which are likely to receive funding. This rules out arbitrary decision making in favour of projects that have greater benefit to the community. A good initiative, for instance, is offering cycling lessons to immigrant women unfamiliar with cycling. These kinds of initiatives ensure that many people (permanently) take up cycling for transportation.

The collaboration between the City of Amsterdam and Mobycon has been a welcoming and beneficial one, combining city-level knowledge with mobility expertise. “Mobycon’s mobility experts know a lot about encouraging and enabling increased cycling behaviour,” says Van ‘t Hof. “What we really appreciate is their flexible and proactive attitude. During the process, many new ideas about the correct approach for success arose and Mobycon was quick to apply them in a meaningful way. Thanks to this open mindset, we came up with the best approach.”

Angela van der Kloof

Strategic Advisor

‘Planning, promotion and education for cycling are great tools that contribute to making places thrive, people participate and be healthy, as well as to the quality of the living environment.’