In both urban and rural environments, modes of transport other than the car are increasingly being used by users over short and medium distances. Even though the bicycle is growing rapidly and confirms its massive democratization since deconfinement, its modal share is not up to the government’s expectations and could continue to grow significantly. In this context, Jean Castex announces the launch of a very ambitious cycling plan.
Very ambitious bicycle plan as part of the government’s stimulus package
As the result of the Covid-19, the bicycle is a mode of transport with many assets that massively seduces french people. Indeed, more and more people travel by bicycle, whether electric, connected or muscle, which encourages the government to plan this “ambitious” plan for the promotion of the little queen. Since the health crisis, there has been a flight from public transport to bicycles and new individual electric vehicles (NVEI). Indeed, the bicycle makes it possible to meet the health, ecological and economic expectations of post-confinement French people: maintaining social distancing, very low greenhouse gas emissions, physical activity for cyclists, all while saving money compared to the use of other means of transportation.
Numerous concrete actions have been implemented to encourage to use bicycles on a daily basis. Indeed, temporary parking spaces as well as training courses to learn or relearn how to ride a bike are now in place. This new plan proposes the deployment of “school mobility”, a school bike pick-up for the child’s home-school trip. The aim is to instill a “passion” for cycling from a very young age to ensure that this continues to be the case.
Since May, a bonus which consists in offering an alternative to the car on short trips has been put in place. The bicycle package for employees is also still active. It is possible to get up to 400€ by going to work by bike, scooter or scooter. The aim of this approach is to promote clean mobility using bike paths (or car-sharing lanes). The recovery plan provides that “by the end of 2021, all territories will have ecological development contracts”.
Safety of cyclists and bikes
The government is planning to develop the practice of cycling. In fact, we should soon find new bicycle paths, as well as many secure bicycle parking spaces near the transit hubs.
The development of bicycle paths
As you may have noticed, since the beginning of the epidemic, many temporary bicycle paths have been created. These paths have been used so much that the government has decided to make them permanent. For the mayors taking this decision regarding the yellow trails, otherwise known as “corona pistes”, the state will provide funding.
The State aims to build long bicycle paths, without dangerous intersections. The most important thing is to link towns and/or villages together without danger, of course, each new action will be a local will. The bicycle is today in real competition with the car.
Secure parking for my bike
Bicycle parking in the vicinity as well as in train and bus stations will be more secure and highlighted. Assistance for the installation of new secure shelters is included in the recovery plan.
In order to be able to park their bikes at home, cycling associations would like to have the possibility of installing a secure room to store their bikes. This lack of space to store your bike forces some people not to buy a bike for fear of having it stolen. Since 2017, according to article R111-14-7 of the French Construction and Housing Code, it is necessary to provide for the installation of a bicycle park when building office or residential buildings. These parking lots must be able to accommodate 15% of the bicycles of employees present in the premises.
According to a study by the 6t research bureau, in a conurbation of 200,000 inhabitants, more than a third of cyclists have already had their bikes stolen. For some, the bicycle is not even an option out of fear of theft. With about 1000 bicycle thefts per day recorded in France, this problem represents a major brake to the growth of cycling in the long term. Cyclists are reluctant to buy a bike and even more reluctant to upgrade to electric bikes which are real alternatives to the car in everyday life.
According to 6t, this fear of theft as well as the lack of storage space and parking would represent more than one million additional bikes on our roads.
Connectivity, the solution for an ambitious bicycle offer
If the challenge of exploding the daily practice of cycling in France is to respond to the problem of theft, the solution exists and just needs to be deployed more massively. Indeed, connectivity will make people and bicycles safer and more secure, for smarter mobility.
Velco offers customized solutions for bicycle manufacturers and fleet managers. A tracker is installed on the bikes to collect data: GPS position, battery level of the bike, kms covered, average time of use … These data are then used on a dedicated platform by the manufacturer or the manager to facilitate maintenance, find stolen or lost bikes, better understand the habits of cyclists to adapt the next models, have the performance of the fleet …
The user of the bike has an improved experience thanks to a web or mobile application allowing him to know his statistics, to geolocate his bike, to activate a remote alarm in case of suspicious movement detected … New services to reassure and meet the expectations of cyclists. A complete device against theft and to offer a better overall experience to users and professionals.
Connectivity, coupled with commitments by local authorities and the State to appropriate and secure infrastructure, is the key to opening up new possibilities for bicycles and enabling them to become a major mode of transportation in the years to come.