Boris Johnson was one of the leaders of the Brexit movement and is now Foreign Minister of Great Britain. Previously, he served for eight years as mayor of London. During this time, he invested heavily in expanding the bicycle infrastructure in the British capital. The rental bicycles available at many places are also known as “Boris Bikes”. Johnson’s successor, Sadik Khan, would like to not only manage this legacy but also expand it further. For example, over the next five years, the city’s “Transport for London” company will invest around a billion euros in the maintenance and expansion of the bicycle infrastructure.
Cycling provides for less congestion and better air
The money will then be used, among other things, to create two new bicycles and a continuous East-West connection. The aim of these measures is also clear: By means of secure cycle paths, more citizens are to be convinced to return to the bicycle on inner-city tours. This would not only reduce traffic in the city center, but also increase air quality. But critics deny these advantages. The association of the London taxis even asserts that bicycle paths ultimately lead to more congestion – could not prove this claim so far. The mayor, however, has already promised that the necessary construction work should be carried out in such a way that the car traffic is influenced as little as possible.
Denmark and the Netherlands are regarded as ones to follow
The planned bill investment amounts to about twenty euros per inhabitant per year. In this area, London is roughly on a par with the Netherlands and Denmark. Both countries are exemplary in the field of bicycle infrastructure, which is also reflected in the numbers of use: in Denmark, 18 percent of all routes are covered by the bike – and in the Netherlands even a proud 27 percent. London has so far only dreamed of such values. The proportion of bicycles is still clearly in the single-digit range. However, the planned investments could change this in the medium term.