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Europe's Top Cities for Urban Mobility

23. října 2009
Europe's Top Cities for Urban Mobility
Three cities receive EU level award for forward-looking solutions

KRAKOW, 20 October 2009

- At a high-profile event in Krakow today, three European cities were named winners of the 2009 CITIVAS Awards: Gent (Belgium); London Borough of Sutton (UK); and Nantes (France). Their sustainable urban mobility activities and programmes have been designated as the most outstanding, ambitious and innovative of 2009 by the CIVITAS Political Advisory Committee. The award was given at a special ceremony on the occasion of the 2009 CIVITAS Forum Conference.

CIVITAS, which stands for CIty-VITAlity-Sustainability, is an EU initiative to promote cleaner, better, more sustainable and energy efficient urban transport strategies in European cities.

The three 2009 CIVITAS Award winners:

CIVITAS Award: 'The Future of Urban Mobility' for a CIVITAS demonstration city.

Any of the 58 CIVITAS demonstration cities were eligible to apply for this award.

2009 Winner: Gent

Bicycles are at the heart of Gent's mobility policy, and the city has proven its dedication to this priority through the creation of a large pedestrian area in the city centre, the development of a primary cycle network, a student-friendly bicycle rental system, and plans to build a garage for more than 10,000 bicycles. These efforts are complemented by a host of public transportation services, namely extended tramlines, segregation of public transport lanes, longer operating hours, free night buses, and free public transport for children under the age of 15.

CIVITAS Award: 'The Future of Urban Mobility' for a CIVITAS non-demonstration city.

Any of the 105 CIVITAS Forum Network members were eligible to apply for this award.

2009 Winner: London Borough of Sutton

'Smarter Travel Sutton' is the name of this London Borough's social marketing programme to convince citizens to change their transport habits, and reduce resident car trips. Since 2006, the Sutton Council has actively made contact with every household in the borough (population 185,000) in an attempt to encourage them to complete a 'personal travel planning' project. All schools in Sutton have a 'School Travel Plan' and more than 100 Sutton businesses have a Workplace Travel Plan. The lb5 million campaign is the largest and most ambitious campaign of its kind undertaken in Europe.

CIVITAS Award: 'CIVITAS City of the Year'

Any of the 58 CIVITAS demonstration cities were eligible to apply for this award.

2009 Winner: Nantes

Nantes' winning entry focused on four action areas, which helped it earn the 'City of the Year' award. The first two actions relate to the bus network: the development of a clean bus fleet (more than 80% of the city's total bus fleet now runs on compressed natural gas; and the design of a new 'Chronobus' quality and performance mark for bus lines within Nantes. Third, Nantes demonstrated aggressive improvement in bicycle use through the construction of secure bike parking spaces, extension of the rent-a-bike service, and experimentation with the use of foldable bicycles in combination with public transport. Finally, the city remodelled city centre roads to favour public transport (tram lines, for example) over private cars.

The aim of the CIVITAS Awards is to showcase efforts by cities that turn policy into reality - that is, progressive actions and tangible implementations of sustainable energy policies. Ultimately it is hoped that the CIVITAS programme and CIVITAS Awards will stimulate more and more cities across Europe to adopt similar sustainable urban transport policies.

Winners of the Award receive a trophy and certificate, and most importantly, recognition and visibility of their programme.

This year marks the 6th edition of the CIVITAS Awards. They were first given in 2004, and each year the Awards programme has more competitive and attracted more entries in each of the three award categories.

The CIVITAS initiative helps cities to achieve a more sustainable, clean and energy efficient urban transport system by implementing and evaluating an ambitious integrated mix of technology and policy based measures.

The CIVITAS Forum Conference is an annual opportunity for the exchange of dialogue and views between city- and EU-level politicians and urban mobility experts. The 2009 conference was the 7th edition of the Conference. Previous meetings have been held in Bologna, Kaunas, Burgos, Nantes, Rotterdam and Graz.

The CIVITAS Forum Network currently includes 163 European cities that have formally committed to clean and sustainable urban transport.

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