The feeling of a real bike ride. Traffic lights, crossroads, avenues, curves, in the center of the city, along the ring roads, on the outskirts. It seems to pedal, to be on the path. Instead you are at homesitting in front of the computer. Not virtual reality, they are videos: an initial micro introduction, the coordinates to understand in which part of Milan you are and how long it will be along the route and then off you go, in the saddle. the latest initiative of Fiab Milano Ciclobby, a series of films to present the evolution of the cycling network of the capital.
We have been standing still for more than a year, like everyone else. Promotional activities, Sunday trips, urban explorations, all impossible, forbidden, he says Guia Biscaro, president of the association which for thirty-five years has been fighting for the defense of cyclists’ rights and the diffusion of the bicycle as a means of daily transport. A ferocious stop precisely at the key moment, of great vivacity, with the cycle paths that multiply thanks to the new decrees: the data of the last year record almost two hundred km of new bike lanes in 21 Italian cities, with Milan in the lead (plus 35 km to add to the existing network). We could not have been there, not to tell this new chapter of urban cycling, Biscaro points out.
Thus was born the idea of videos. A volunteer who goes around the city with a video camera hooked to the helmet and test the new lanes reserved for two wheels: those separated from the road lane (by a curb) and the cycle paths defined as emergency, only painted, highly contested (even if safe, in Amsterdam and Copenhagen, European two-wheel capitals , have been realized for years). Among other things, cycle paths that continue to record extraordinary mileage peaks – explains the activist – our latest census on the Piazza San Babila-Corso Buenos Aires axis, carried out by volunteers six months ago, showed an increase that in the busiest sections of the long commercial artery reaches 122 percent. the demonstration that when you ensure safety, citizens enjoy cycling.
Ciclobby’s videos on the new Milanese cycle paths are uploaded to YouTube, with once a week. We bring to light even the most hidden, of the suburbs, we give information on the continuity of the network, on the connections between the different routes. The goal is to demonstrate how the bike can become the alternative to the car also to go to work, on daily journeys. The association has a long tradition of inspections along the cycle paths, especially on new ones, still under construction or to be completed. Over the past five years these inspections, which we call ‘unstitched blankets’, had become fixed, open appointments, which were also attended by the technicians of the Municipality – concludes the president -. Important opportunities to present observations, make new proposals, with a view to rendering Milan is increasingly a city of active mobility. We will put them back on the calendar soon, in the meantime we offer videos.
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