Most European cities are characterised by high levels of motorization and car use and motorisation. Often up to 25 % of all car trips in cities are not longer than 3 km - a distance that could easily be walked or cycled. So, for small and mid sized municipalities the focus on active travel modes is an appropriate approach to tackle transport problems.
The Active Travel Network aims to tackle transport problems caused by solo car use in small and medium sized cities by motivating individuals to walk or cycle. The project is co-funded by the URBACT-Programme which is a European exchange and learning programme promoting sustainable urban development, bringing together 9 partners from 7 European countries.
The main challenges of the project are:
- To raise awareness for cycling and walking as means of transport in cities so that cities are encouraged to implement appropriate supportive measures;
- To show that infrastructural measures alone are not sufficient to make people walking or cycling and that it also needs complementary soft measures (i.e. mobility management).
The main outputs of the project are Local Action Plans (LAP's) for each partner city. These LAPs provide concrete solutions to tackle the core issues identified during an Active Travel Audit (ATA) at the start of the project. The audit methodology is based upon the BYPAD audit scheme but has been modified and enriched for the topic of walking. For further details see the ATA Guidelines and the ATA Questionnaire.
Each partner city also carried out at least one awareness raising measure or campaign to strengthen the impact of the trans-national training and exchange of experience activities. These case studies have all been uploaded on Eltis in a summarised form. The extended versions can also be downloaded from the Active Travel Network site.
The final project brochure (published in November 2012) describes the baseline situation, the challenges, summaries of the most important points from the LAP's of each partner city, and highlights of the work of the local support groups in these cities.