Cargo bikes: easy and green urban space transformers

Carbo bikes

No matter what, people always need either to move somewhere or to carry stuff with them. This is the logistic challenge of our cities and neighbourhoods.

This perception persists when organising open-air activities, festivals or street events. Whether you are a private company or a municipality, it is thought that you can’t avoid using a car to transport tools and material.

But this is not true! Within the METAMORPHOSIS project, the municipality of Tilburg (the Netherlands) is experimenting with the use of cargo-bikes to transport materials for “street openings,” temporary installations with primary schools, and for all kinds of open-air activities. The municipality is showing local citizens and professionals that cargo bikes are easy to ride, eco-friendly and can carry heavy items without difficulty.

Did you know that one car parking space can be used to park up to four cargo bikes? In Graz (Austria), streets are being transformed using so-called “space transformer” cargo bikes instead of cars, thereby letting people access more of the street, including areas that are usually blocked by parked cars. By using bikes like this, citizens can legally transform their streets without needing authorisation from the municipality.

The space transformer intervention is planned for Graz’s Lend district and will be scaled up to four additional areas. To ensure successful implementation, it is crucial to make the "space transformer" bikes attractive with features like sun parasols and cushions and to keep them clean and usable for everyone.

For this reason, every “space transformer” is supported by a “host” who takes responsibility for it: this might be a shop owner, restaurant, organisation, or residents living in the district.

Do you want to discover 20 reasons to transform our cities using clean and accessible vehicles? Have a look at the Metamorphosis website.

Image credit: © Gemeente Tilburg 2019

Author: Carlotta Petolicchio


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