Awards 2021

Europe’s leaders in sustainable urban mobility and transport were honoured at the CIVITAS Awards 2021. The cities of Parma (Italy), Aachen (Germany), and Gdynia (Poland) were recognised in three distinct categories, winning Europe’s most prestigious prizes for sustainable approaches to urban mobility.

At a dynamic CIVITAS Forum in Aachen, top mobility experts presented the awards, with the categories acknowledging: the most ambitious transport initiatives undertaken to create a climate-neutral city; a high-impact legacy forged through CIVITAS involvement; and transforming a city into a more liveable environment.

Preview the work of the 2021 Award winners and runners-up through a series of short, 1-minute videos, available here.

Transformation Award

Winner city: Aachen

Aachen was selected as the winner of this year’s “Transformation” award in recognition that, since 2020, the city has transformed 4.2 km of cycling routes, built 1076 bicycle racks, built 150 new e-vehicle charging stations, introduced the first hydrogen garbage trucks in Germany, and increased the capacity of its Mobility and Planning Department.

Uwe Müller, Head of the Traffic Planning and Mobility Division, Deputy Head, Department of Urban Development, Planning and Mobility Infrastructure from the Aachen reflects:

“The CIVITAS – Transformation Award for Aachen shows that change in mobility happens! Mobility infrastructure does turn towards people: more space for safe, calm and environmental-friendly mobility, creating spaced with a high liveability. The award is both a reward and an incentive: a reward for our young and striving team of mobility-changers, tackling all areas of mobility, and an incentive to continue this sustainable process for all – for citizens, employees, decision-making politicians, visitors and, last but not least, the surrounding region. I’m really proud to be part of this transformation in Aachen!”

Runners-up: Cascais (Portugal) and Budapest (Hungary)

Aachen Bicycle street

Legacy Award

Winner city: Gdynia

Since Gdynia joined its first CIVITAS project in 2004, the city has taken the lessons it has learnt via CIVITAS and incorporated them. This has influenced the city’s Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan (SUMP), and has contributed to new bus lanes, cargo bikes, pedestrian-friendly zones, trolley- and clean buses, mobility campaigns, data management and more. It is clear why Gdynia has won this year’s “Legacy” award.

As Marek Łucyk, Deputy Mayor responsible for sustainable development in Gdynia explains:

“Since joining the CIVITAS community, we as a city have had the great opportunity to learn, develop and implement innovative solutions, as well as to share our knowledge on sustainable mobility. This has increased the quality and accelerated the process of our city’s development towards a green and people-friendly city. We constantly strive to provide new and better mobility solutions and enhance citizens’ sustainable ways of life and we are happy that this has been acknowledged by the CIVITAS Initiative.”

Gdynia port with cyclists

Climate Neutral Award

Winner city: Parma

To reach its climate goals, Parma put in place its most ambitious sustainable mobility project: a new Low Emission Zone. This project has helped Parma to be declared the winner of this year’s “Climate-Neutral” award.

Tiziana Benassi, Deputy Mayor for Environmental Sustainability from the City of Parma expressed:

“Our ambition, shared amongst the public and private organisations that are partners of the Parma Carbon Neutrality Alliance, is to reach carbon neutrality by 2030: a very ambitious yet achievable goal if we all believe change is possible and we work every day to fight climate change. We want to promote a new mobility culture, centred on our citizens’ needs, while being more sustainable and environmentally-friendly. Limiting access for the most polluting cars with the introduction of a Low Emission Zone across the entire urban area is our first step in the systemic transformation to make Parma a green and carbon-neutral city. The Green area, whose heart is the historical city centre (Blue area), will contribute to a higher quality of life of everyone visiting, working and living in Parma.”

Runners-up: Heraklion (Greece) and Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni (Greece)

Parma central square
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