June 20, 2013

Where is the best place for cycling? Unfortunately, it is not Italy

Economy

Where is the best place for cycling? Unfortunately, it is not Italy

Cycling is firstly an ecological choice. It is quiet, clean and space saving: for everyone, the bicycle is a symbol of sustainable mobility, but also a different way to live life in the city. Personally, I have always had a particular passion for open-air sports, practiced in contact with nature, and cycling is certainly one of these.

I read the ranking of the ten most bike-friendly cities in the world, released a few weeks ago, with great interest. Amsterdam is in first place with 500 kilometers of cycle ways, where the bicycle is the most commonly used method of transport. It is followed (unsurprisingly) by other northern European cities including Copenhagen and Berlin, which, despite the unfavorable climate, have invested heavily in cycling. A few welcome surprises are also starting to appear further south: Barcelona, for example, has developed one of the best bike-sharing systems in the world.

As you will see, there is no trace of Italy. This is a pity: because the lack of attention given to bikes in our country is a missed opportunity for many reasons. First of all, biking is the ideal way to get immersed in our historic centers and enjoy their rich culture. Also, the development of sustainable mobility would lead to an improvement in the quality of the air and, in general, the quality of life.

However, there are not only environmental advantages: according to a study carried out by the Department of Transportation of New York, small businesses located in neighborhoods where new bike paths have been created have had an average increase in sales of 50%. Isn’t this enough for us to decide to adopt this model?

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