Three development trends of cycling in Ukraine in 2015 from the conference Veloforum

On 10-11th of October the city of  Kryvyi Rih hosted the international conference Veloforum – the main event for cycling activists in Ukraine, which brought together public representatives, experts, enterpreneurs and local governments representatives to share experience and ideas on the development of cycling.

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Veloforum gathered over 110 participants from 29 cities and 6 European countries: Belarus, UK, Germany, Poland, Serbia and Ukraine. Besides intense program of presentations, participants got time for informal communication and industrial cycling tours  in Kryvyi Rih.

“Such events as Veloforum is not only a great opportunity for bicycle activists from all over Ukraine to meet, but also extremely motivating occasion for the local community, particularly  cycling ones, to unite and promote the city and cycling opportunities  in a joint effort ,” – says Alisa Hnydiuk, co-organizer of Veloforum, Institute of the city of Kryvyi Rih.

The development of cycling in Ukraine in 2015 was following such trends:

Cities develop cycling concepts

Thanks to the cooperation of active cyclists, experts on development of cities and municipalities in 2015, eight Ukrainian cities created cycling concepts – the document that defines the strategy for development of urban cycling. It includes a cycling network scheme, justifies the choice of infrastructure according to the conditions of specific streets and offers a variety of activities to promote cycling.

Development of cycling concepts means that cycling activists have reached  the stage of transforming of their ideas  into concrete plans, and the city government starts to seriously take into consideration bicycle and requirements of cycling communities.

Cycling concepts are approved in Bila Tserkva, Brovary, Vinnitsa, Ivano-Frankivsk, Lviv, Lutsk, Mykolayiv, Myrhorod, Odesa, Chernihiv and some towns in Volyn, Lviv and Ivano-Frankivsk regions. Cycling concepts are submitted for approval in Vyshgorod, Kyiv, Kryvyi Rih, Poltava, Cherkasy, Chernivtsi.

Bicycle activists consolidate efforts at the national level

Dialogue of cycling activists from different cities of Ukraine is getting tighter. This is proven by the number of events that simultaneously occurred during the year across Ukraine: bicycle parades, “bike to work” days, PARKing days, European Mobility Week events etc.

In addition to promotional bicycle events, the first national campaign “I support the bike” is organised for the local elections. The campaign was created by the initiative groups from 14 cities of Ukraine, that represent social organizations and movements across the country. The campaign aims at raising public and candidats’ for local elections awareness of the bicycle as an efficient way to solve the traffic problems of our cities.

The issue of creating the nationwide cycling public organization was raised during the Veloforum; currently it is agreed  to unite efforts of bicycle activists in project activity development  and in the framework of solving specific problems.

“Cycling is getting stronger and more visible in Ukraine. Social activists are moving to a new level of cooperation and professionalism, being more effective in achieving common goals “, – says Viktor Zagreba, co-organizer of Veloforum, NGO” Center for Social and Business Initiatives”.

New cycling infrastructure appears in the ukrainian cities

New bicycle paths were constructed in some cities. The most notable projects were implemented in Kiev (Bicycle route ” Troyeshchyna-European square), Ivano-Frankivsk (Orizhka on the waterfront of the river Stefanik), Lviv (20 km of new cycling routes) Vinnytsia, first steps in Chernihiv, Zaporizhia, Odesa.

Infrastructure built in 2015 has higher  quality in comparison with previous projects, but needs further expert advice and constant public control. But the fact of its appearance indicates the transition from talking about the need to create conditions for the movement of cyclists to implementing of specific solutions.

Veloforum is organized  every year in a different city of Ukraine. The right of the city to hold a conference is gotten  on a competitive basis. The organizer of Veloforum is the NGO “Association of cyclists Kyiv”, NGO “Center for Social and Business Initiatives” in partnership with cycling organizations and  municipalities of host cities. Previous year  the event was held in Kyiv, Lutsk, Ivano-Frankivsk, Lviv, Poltava and Yevpatoriia. Veloforum 2016 will be held in Kharkiv.

You can find the full photo report of the Conference in our facebook album

Contacts:
Viktor Zagreba || NGO “Center for Social and Business Initiatives” Yaremche
viktor{a}zagreba.com || +380 67 442 14 94

It’s possible to get the Contacts of Ukrainian cities developing and implementing cycling infrastructure facilities from the coordinator of Ukrainian Centre for Cycling Expertise Iryna Bondarenko, 097 699 10 38, isbondarenko {a} avk.org.ua

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