Milan’s plan: after the lockdown, kickoff with 35 km of new bike paths

The city, one of the most polluted in Europe and one of those most affected by the coronavirus, has an ambitious plan to lighten the role of public transport in the coming months.

With the approach of phase 2 of the coronavirus emergency, Milan announces an ambitious project that aims on the one hand to safeguard the new safety regulations in public transport and on the other hand to promote travel in a city that has always been proud of its hard-working nature. So, together with the controlled entrances in the subway stations and the proposal to design circles that indicate safety distances to all, , there is a reflection on how to improve two-wheeled mobility, both to lighten public transport and to avoid a massive return to the use of the car. The Municipality of Milan is preparing about 35 km of new cycle paths, and the first ones will be built between May and June 2020.

With the national lockdown the Milanese traffic has decreased and with it obviously the pollution. “We have worked for years to reduce the use of the car. If everyone drives a car, there is no space for people, there is no space to move around, there is no space for commercial activities outside the shops”, said the councillor for Mobility of the Municipality Marco Granelli. “Sure, we want to reopen the economy, but we think we should do it on a different basis than before.”
Three solutions have been put in place. “The first thing to do will be to create cycle and pedestrian paths by widening the sidewalks where it is necessary to walk less thickly, in the shortest possible time, in signage only”, explains Granelli specifically. “A second mode will be to use the counter-vials of axles in our city making them become zones at 30 km/h and to circulate bicycles together with cars and motorcycles, but in better safety conditions and at low speed.” Finally, a third mode will be to “make cycle paths and secure roads and crossings along certain axes. To do all these things we need resources, but also changes to some rules of the highway code.”

Opening Image: BikeMi bike sharing station in Piazza Diaz, Milan.

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