CHAMP – 12 cycling commandments

| December 8, 2014

7 CHAMP cities

Why do some European cities have a much higher share of cycling compared to other cities with the same characteristics? This is one of the main questions the CHAMP project addressed.

This European project, which kicked off in October 2011 and ran for three years, brought together seven of the most experienced European cities in the field of cycling: Bolzano, Burgos, Edinburgh, Groningen, Kaunas, Ljubljana and Orebro. Cycling Embassy member VEKSØ Mobility assisted the cities in the project.

By looking at their counterparts in Europe and analysing successes and failures, the CHAMP cities wanted to find ways to further upgrade and optimise their cycling policies as well as collect new ideas for making the bike an even safer and more attractive transport mode. The CHAMPs also reached out to less advanced cities with clear ambitions to help them pave the way towards becoming cycle champions themselves.

CHAMP performance analysis
At the start of the CHAMP project, a performance analysis tool was developed. It was tested in all 7 CHAMP–cities, and subsequently in a number of other cities. The tool allows cities to reflect on their current cycling policy and helps identify their strengths and weaknesses. Using this as a starting point, a city can define new objectives to improve its cycling policy and choose which actions to focus on.

Furthermore, a peer review and gap analysis make it possible to share good practice and lessons learned with other European cities to create safer and more attractive conditions for cycling in Europe.

The CHAMP Cycling Commandments
Based on the wealth of experience gathered within the project, the CHAMP partners have compiled 12 Cycling Commandments to help other cities on the way to becoming a CHAMPion cycling city.

1. Be analytical, know your numbers. Collect quality data and understand your starting point.
2. Engage with others. Get their help to the see the problems in your city and learn from their experiences.
3. Consider the problem before finding a solution. Don’t fall in love with an initiative before you know it addresses the problem.
4. Optimise the position of cycling on the political agenda.
5. Make someone a leader. Find a voice for cycling through somebody prepared to push things forward.
6. Extend the scope of your cycling work. Forge links with other policy fields and transport modes.
7. Administrations should be challenged! Break down barriers that prevent you from making progress.
8. Create an impact. Don’t be afraid to think and act outside the box.
9. Highlight & optimise existing infrastructure. Be opportunistic: make the most of public spaces, events, people and networks.
10. Assure you are well prepared to carry out measures. Plan well. Test – monitor – evaluate – improve – repeat.
11. Marketing techniques such as sampling, branding and segmentation should be used. Keep messages neutral, targeted and positive.
12. Play the media. Sell them good stories, maintain a good image for cycling and celebrate your achievements.


More information about the CHAMP project at www.

Category: Commuting, December 2014, Newsletters in English, Policy