Velo-city 2024
Ghent
18-21 June 2024

Cycle with us

                 
   

Connecting through Cycling

Main theme

Connection is everything. One place with another, one city with its region, one river bank with the other side. People with people.

The bicycle is the ideal mode of connection! It connects places, it connects people and it can connect different modes of transport and sectors.

Low-tech, low-cost, easy, sustainable and in constant connection with other cyclists and the environment. Let’s use the bicycle to reconnect.

 

Subthemes:


   Connecting people and communities 

 

   Connecting regions, cities and neighbourhoods 

 

   Connecting cycling with other modes 

 

   Connecting industries and sectors

Connecting people and communities

Cycling is a gift to society. It is one of the best modes of transport to connect people, communities and population groups in a city. Its democratic strength is remarkable with the potential to bring positive change through better accessibility and cheaper, healthier and more social mobility systems. To increase the number of people cycling, we need to build an inclusive cycling culture that appeals to people of all backgrounds. Moreover, to tackle transport poverty, focusing on the bicycle is one of our best options. 

Connecting regions, cities and neighbourhoods

The purpose and overall cycling experience differs greatly between dense cities and rural areas. However, with the right conditions, bikes are an ideal mode of transport not only within cities, but also in between and to and from more suburban and rural areas around cities. Spatial layouts and possibilities are very different. How can we ensure continuous and easily readable infrastructure throughout?

How can we bridge physical “walls”, like ring ways, water and train tracks? How does the intensity of motorised traffic change the design of bike lanes along the way? How should we prioritise flows of different transport modes entering or connecting cities? At the same time, we should not forget that it is not only about the hardware. We need more to enable safe and com­fortable cycling: it is about politicians and stakeholders working together, building alliances and negotiating to achieve tangible results. 

Connecting cycling with other modes

For many people, a bike is not just a transport mode on its own, but it can also be part of an entire chain of different modes to get from A to B. The rise of e-bikes has certainly increased the geographical range of many cyclists, but distances have their limits. The combination with walking, public transport, (shared) cars and (shared) bikes for the first or last mile or to enable car-free living becomes increasingly popular. This trend brings along new challenges and needs: sufficient bike parking at train stations, shared bike availability at the Park+Bike, pedestrian facilities, safe overnight parking options, MaaS for single booking of bike, train and bus...

 

Connecting industries and sectors

Cycling is a solution to many challenges and can help many stakeholders reach their sustainability goals. Sustainable economic activity is only possible through investing and partnering with carbon-reducing and less polluting solutions. More cycling will make us less dependent on fossil fuels, generate employment, help tackle the climate crisis and alleviate health budgets. It can play a key role in creating new inclusive and green jobs in a range of diverse sectors and thus contribute significantly to the transition towards green economies.