June 11-14, more than 1,400 traffic planners, architects, consultants, scholars, decision makers, NGOs and bicycle enthusiasts met in Vienna to inspire and share their knowledge on promoting cycling as a means of transport. A delegation of 25 represented the CED, and like the other conference goers, we had an amazing bicycle week in Vienna.
By Marianne Weinreich, Head of Mobility at VEKSØ Mobility, Vice Chair Cycling Embassy of Denmark
The CED has participated in Velo-city for the past five years with a stand. This year was no exception, and we had the pleasure of many inquisitive and inspiring guests from all over the world. As in 2012, the hard copy of our “Collection of Cycle Concepts 2012” was in great demand – although it is also available for download at our website.
Presentations in many formats
The Cycling Embassy of Denmark represents a number of Denmark’s leading cycle cities, consultants, and NGOs, and so we had many speakers at both plenary and sub-plenary sessions. The Danish presentations included: dividing the road into 30 km/h zones; how cycling is a good investment for society; bicycle tourism; examples of Danish cycle campaigns and initiatives to promote cycling among various target groups; cyclists’ shopping habits; and the Danish mistakes that others should NOT copy! The presentations are available at www.velo-city2013.com.
Leadership Award for Cycling Promotion
Every year at Velo-city, the Cycling Embassy chooses an individual or an organisation that we want to acknowledge and honour for their work to promote cycling. This year, the prize went to the Vice Mayor of Munich, Hep Monatzeder. Hep has led the way for Munich to become one of the most important cycle cities in Europe. His dedication and willingness to promote cycling as part of his sustainable strategy is an inspiration to all big cities in Europe. Previous award winners include such prominent advocates as Mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg (U.S.), Roelof Wittink (NL), Lake Sagaris (CL), and Randy Neufeld (U.S.)
Next spring, we will once again ask for nominations for the award to be given at Velo-City 2014 in Adelaide, Australia.
Garden party and bicycle parade
In addition to an interesting technical program, Vienna also pulled out all the stops to make the conference a festive event. In that spirit, we must especially highlight a fabulous garden party that underlines that the cycling community is a humorous lot with great dancing feet.
Yet, our legs were not too tired to participate in the following day’s Bike Parade where 5,000 people biked through the streets of Vienna in the most beautiful sunshine. It was a fantastic sight and a great experience.
A loud thank you to the organisers in Vienna and ECF for a good conference. We look forward to going down under to Adelaide next year.