Warsaw will invest in cycling infrastructure

A majority of Polish people have bicycles, but not many of them use their bikes to commute. One of the main reasons for this is insufficient amount of bicycle lanes and other cycling infrastructure in towns and cities. A lot has changed in the recent years, and more and more city officials see the need to make this kind of investment.

Now, Warsaw hops on the cycling city bandwagon. City officials have recently announced they want to create 19 new roads for bike users. Their total length is to be as much as 73.4 kilometres. Their key function will be to link several Warsaw boroughs with the city centre. Money will come from Brussels.

The total value of the investment is expected to close at 110 million PLN. 71.5 million PLN the city hopes to receive from the EU. In return, the capital hopes to reap the benefits of lighter car traffic, better air quality, and dropping numbers of accidents involving bikers. All these are to translate to more money in the city budget.

The project will be carried out within the Integrated Territorial Investment Programme and Regional Operational Programme of the Masovian Voivodship.

The scheme is a part of Warsaw’s Programme of Development of Bicycle Routes by 2020.

Warsaw may boast more and more bike users. Its public bike rental system, Veturilo, similar to bike rental schemes in such European capitals as Paris and Berlin, has been attracting more and more cyclists since its launch in 2012.

Veturilo operator recently announced that the summer months of 2016 have set new records when it comes to bike usage. From the beginning of 2016, there has been almost 1.3 million rentals. Within the last four years the system made it possible for over 410 000 city dwellers and tourists to move through the Polish capital on two wheels.

At first, Veturilo offered 55 rental stations and 1000 bicycles but soon the numbers grew to 205 and 3100 respectively. However, this is not the end. It was already announced that next year Warsaw will have 300 stations and 5000 bikes, including electric and for children.

According to the statistics, one Veturilo bicycle is rented every 11 seconds, while the most dedicated user rented a bike over 3 thousand times within four years.

Following the great success of the public bike rental system, the city of Warsaw initiated actions to launch public car rental, or carsharing service, for people who use cars only sporadically.