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Analysis of actions to promote bicycle mobility due to COVID-19 in Catalonia

This pandemic will bring some changes to society and cities. The normality to which we were used to be will change and now is the time to work on this “new normality”. One of the changes that is taking place is the increase in bicycle mobility. This is because interpersonal distances, which are difficult to cover on public transport, have had to be increased. Then, some public transportation users are considering cycling.

Obviously, only a part of public transport users can switch to cycling, as the reach of public transport get even 60 km per journey and this is difficult to do in the context of urban cycling mobility.

Mobility has also been greatly streamlined, so we enjoy fewer cars on the streets and roads and we do have cleaner air. This promotes the use of the bicycle as it becomes safer and healthier.

At CycloCat (non profit organisation) we document and classify cycling routes between cities and towns in Catalonia with a criteria of minimum gradient and maximum safety. With the actions that are being carried out in some municipalities, we see that the network that we consider “secure” according to our criteria is being expanded and we want to transmit this valuable information to as many people as possible to enjoy this new situation.

Now is a good time, not only to leave public transportation to ride a bike, but also to leave the car to pick up the bike. In the following articles, we review the impact and appropriateness of the actions being taken. We hope that this collection of itineraries is of interest to you and that you can enjoy safe and healthy cycling.

As you can see, most of the changes and improvements are in the area of ​​Barcelona, ​​as it is the only metropolis in Catalonia and concentrates the majority of the population and displacements in the territory. In any case, we will not forget the rest of Catalonia and we will include the actions that are carried out in other cities and counties (if any).

We would also like to point out that the proposed actions are based on the study of interurban bicycle mobility and seek to maximize investment. Actions outside the recommendations either help mobility within the same city, or we do not find that they meet the real needs of the population when it comes to cycling at the level of forced mobility.

Notice that many of the recommendations that we make are based on normal pre-confinement conditions and that the volumes of motorized traffic (and therefore the danger to which the bicycle is exposed in some sections) may differ between current reality and our valuations.

by: Joan Calvera (CycloCat founder)

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