A city that has one third of its population travelling on cycles. Only one third of its population owning cars. And pollution levels declining at a rate of 5% per year. It’s Copenhagen, Denmark. In a survey in 2013 it edged out Amsterdam for the city that bikes the most.
It sits on the coastal islands of Zealand and Amager. This city enjoys a cool weather all through the year ranging from17°C (63°F) to 0°C. Furthermore, there are wide lanes and super-highways.
These, and many more factors have led Copenhagen to become ‘The city of cyclists’.
Imagine exploring a full city on a cycle. Tough, isn’t it? But Copenhagen claims it to be probably their best means of tourism. It also provides bicycles for their guests; there are numerous bike rentals and bike tours on offer. Most noteworthy is that you can rent the new electric city bikes for a very low cost per hour. Expect 75 kroners (750 rupees) a day’s rental and 350 (3500 rupees) kroners for a week.
In addition,Copenhagen is building even more green routes through Copenhagen to ensure a safe and green transport route for cyclists while creating green spots in the cityscape. Danish architect and urban planner Jan Gehl is famous for teaching other cities around the world how to plan for a bike culture. It even has its own term: “copenhagenization” or “to copenhagenize”.
Infrastructure and roads:
Copenhagen is covered by 350 km of cycle paths and lanes which are raised from the road and really safe to cycle on. Some city junctions even have flashing lights when cyclists approach to warn drivers before they turn. Copenhagen excels because of its many, broad and widely-used cycle lanes. Consequently, it’s only a short ride north or south of the city to fantastic beaches, forests, parkland and other attractions.
You’ll have more trouble getting around here with your car anyway, and it’s really the only genuine way to get a feel for this beautiful city. Even top politicians ride their bike every day to parliament. Hence, only 29% of the households in Copenhagen even own a car. While motorists sit in tailbacks, cyclists tend to sweep through the city.
Cycling Helps tourism!
In 1995, Copenhagen was one of the first cities in the world to launch free city bikes for its citizens and visitors. The first generation of bikes later retired, and in 2013, a brand new generation of electric city bikes with GPS and tourist information was introduced. Almost, 1,800 bikes are spread across the streets of the Danish capital. As a result you will find them at train and metro stations around Copenhagen.
How does it benefit the society?
A study shows that for every km cycled, society enjoys 16p profit while driving the same distance produces a loss of 10p. Finally,if a city is such impeccably induced to bicycles, you can imagine in dreamy thoughts, the profit the city earns in terms of wealth and health.
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