ECF Rolls Cargo Bikes into EU Parliament
BRUSSELS, Belgium – “More people should realize that, potentially, 50% of motor vehicle trips moving goods about in our cities could be switched to bikes. And that over 90% of trips to the supermarket could also be accomplished by bicycle.” This was the core statement that was delivered April 3 to members of the European institutions, NGO’s and business representatives of the logistics and cycling industry at the round table meeting held at the EU parliament building in Brussels.
Hosted by Green member of the European parliament Michael Kramer and organized by the European Cyclists’ Federation ECF, the focus group discussed realistic ways to integrate and develop cycle transport into a new promising business model. The discussion took place running up to the International Cargo Bike Festival in Nijmegen (Netherlands) next April 12-13. For the full programme: www.cargobikefestival.com
‘Create better access conditions’
“Even though city logistics constitute a massive part of the economic life it is highly neglected,” said Mark Major, Policy Officer for Sustainable Urban Mobility at the European Commission. “Cities need to understand that by creating better access conditions they nurture the right environment for new business models to grow”. The Commission is working on recommended guidelines on access regulation for cities which will be published next year.
In terms of successful business case studies, DHL Express presented their pilot projects in various European cities. Arne Melse, OPS Field Support Specialist for DHL, resumed: “Cycling in the inner city actually saves time and money and DHL has plans to expand its pilot programs in more cities and more countries. Economically viable arguments that increase our commitment to cycling is reduced costs, employees that are less stressed, saving time and distance covered.”
‘Start to mass-produce’
Moreno Fioravanti, representing Colibi, the Accell Group and EBMA (European Bicycle Manufacturers) stated: “If we could identify the perfect business models based on the experience of DHL and launch pilot programs in various countries, then the cycling industry can start to mass-produce.”
Raymond Gense, Director Future Technology & Public Affairs of Pon Bicycle Group supported Fioravanti’s statement and added: “Either by pilot delivery programs, the coordination of national and local access policies or technical requirements for the bike production, all players and the legal pre-conditions needs to be synchronized.”