A meeting of the associations of the European Cyclists’ Federation in Paris
Representatives of the Center for Environment, Dragan Kabic and Tihomir Dakic, attended the meeting of the Leadership Program of the European Cyclists’ Federation, whose Center for Environment is a member. The meeting was held in Paris from 6th to 9th December 2018 and hosted by the French Federation of Bicycle Users (FUB).
“Although it seemed that the Parisians somewhat exaggerated by practicing the cultural heritage of seeking their rights on the streets of this city, the visit went in the best order, and all present, through the various workshops, were able to learn many things related to cycling advocacy, legislation and infrastructure, as well as different ways of financing campaigns and projects” – said Dragan Kabić, assistant on the Transport Program at the Center for Environment.
The meeting was attended by representatives of eight European countries: Slovakia, Estonia, Slovenia, France, Croatia, Portugal, Italy and Bosnia and Herzegovina. In addition to these, the meeting was also attended by the President of the European Cyclists’ Federation, Mr. Christophe Najdovski who is also the Deputy Mayor of Paris, in charge of transport, roads and public spaces. From Christophe, the audience could hear what Paris had done for the past six months in terms of improving traffic in this, in smog and traffic jams strangled, French capital. From 3000 one-way streets in which cyclists are allowed to move in both directions with accompanying horizontal and vertical signalization, through the abolition of one of the car lanes on larger roads due to the making of bicycle paths and countless kilometers of new bicycle lanes, to the abolition of motor traffic in certain zones especially on the roads besides the river Seine, on both sides. So the things don’t stay just in words, he joined us on a cycling tour of his city where he explained to us the work so far but also plans for the coming years.
Motor traffic in Paris is still burdened. For those who use motor vehicles. Despite some unconvincing beliefs, the fact is that the increase of the number of car lanes does not relieve traffic. It exclusively increases the number of motor vehicles on them. And it takes away the precious space. The abolition of car lanes and their conversion into pedestrian and bicycle paths provides an alternative.
“It was interesting to see how the Paris city authorities cooperate with representatives of associations dealing with the development and promotion of bicycle traffic, and with which respect they accept their suggestions and criticisms. Representatives of cities and municipalities in Bosnia and Herzegovina could learn a lot from Mr. Christophe, who rides a bicycle on the daily base, and who is quite familiar with how to solve the traffic problems in his city” – concludes Tihomir Dakić.