The European Metropolis of Lille (MEL), which includes 90 municipalities with 1.2 million people, has announced that it will offer financial assistance for those wishing to purchase a bicycle to help boost cycling in the region.
From 1 April, Lille will pay 25 per cent of the purchase price of a new bicycle, with a limit set at € 150 for regular bicycles and € 300 for electric bicycles.
Only one subsidy will be granted per household for a period of three years.
The overall amount of funding available for the year is € 100 000.
This funding is part of a bicycle plan adopted in December by the metropolitan council, which aims to promote cycling as Lille battles with air pollution and congestion.
With 2.6 million inhabitants, the Nord department is the most populous in France. According to the latest report of the urban transport plan (PDU) of the metropolis, only 2 per cent of trips are made by bicycle.
MEL's goal is to increase the modal share five-fold. It is also investing € 30 million to build over 100 km of bike lanes by 2020.
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