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5 winners of the European Cyclists’ Federation awards at Velo-city 

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The European Cyclists’ Federation has announced the winners of the ECF awards that recognise outstanding achievements in promoting and enabling cycling at its flagship conference Velo-city 2024

They are the European Parliament, City of Bologna, Metropolis of Lyon, City of Quelimane, and the City of Ghent, each chosen for one of five categories of bicycling excellence.

2024 marks the third edition of the ECF awards at Velo-city. This year they were held in the City of Ghent’s Kuipke Velodrome in front of 1,500 delegates.

“The people who tirelessly work for more and better cycling all over Europe and the world rarely get the recognition they deserve,” ECF President Henk Swarttouw, who hosted the ceremony with CEO Jill Warren, told Zag Daily. 

“The same applies to cities and their officials who make an effort to improve the conditions for cycling and who make their streets safer for cyclists of all ages and abilities. That’s why we, as ECF, on behalf of all cyclists pay tribute to the cities of Bologna, Ghent, Lyons and Quelimane and thank them for their leadership.”

The five shining examples

The European Parliament won the ECF Cycle-Friendly Employer Award after it became the first EU institution to attain Cycle Friendly Employer certification. The institution is a “shining example” of how an employer can encourage their employees to cycle to work. It provides free bike maintenance, bicycle parking, and organises annual promotional events which include lectures, workshops, bicycle tours and training.

The City of Bologne, Italy won the ECF Road Safety Award after being the first major Italian city to impose 30 km/h speed limits on most streets. Cycling has increased by 29% within the first few months of implementation as a result. ECF also credited the city for implementing its speed reduction initiative amidst a politically challenging climate.

Grand Lyon’s pursuit to create a fully bikeable city by 2030 has earned France’s Metropolis of Lyon the ECF Cycling Improvement Award. Its €500 million 2024-2030 plan strives for 99% of citizens to be within 10 minutes of a high-quality bike lane. A 6.7% increase in the number of cyclists has been recorded in the past year.

Mozambique’s City of Quelimane earned the ECF Best Active Mobility Award as the site of the country’s first cycle lane. Quelimane’s Mayor Manuel Araujo was recognised for leading the city’s transition to sustainable mobility and Quelimane now has a modal split of 40% walking and 35% cycling.

Velo-city’s host, the City of Ghent in Belgium, won the ECF Cycling Infrastructure Award for its 500 kilometres of cycling infrastructure and more than 60 cycling bridges and underpasses connecting cyclists to desired destinations. Velo-city will see the ribbon-cutting of Ghent’s latest major infrastructure – the Annie Vande Wielebrug bridge which will accommodate over 3,000 cyclists and pedestrians per day. 

The fourth edition of the ECF Awards will take place at Velo-city 2025 in Gdansk, Poland from 10 to 13 June.

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