Walking and cycling are important forms of climate-friendly transport. Yet they also contribute to quality of life in urban areas. They are affordable, they promote health, they are accessible to almost everyone, they emit no pollutants, they take up little space and they produce scarcely any noise. And most cities with a high share of cyclists among commuters have less congested streets. Fortunately, the importance of the bicycle as a means of transport has increased greatly in recent years, and Germans are using bikes more frequently and to travel longer distances.
If the transition to sustainable mobility is to be successful, this trend must persist, even if it encounters resistance. The good news is that cities and regions that promote cycling tend to be perceived as vibrant, desirable places to live. To encourage the use of bicycles, investment in bicycle infrastructure is crucial. Indeed, whenever safe and reliable bike paths are in place, people use them. Proper infrastructure can also pave the way for the introduction of electric cargo bikes as alternatives to vans for commercial deliveries – a largely untapped potential for making urban transport cleaner.