From April 26th - 27th, Mr. Reindert Augustijn of the Province of Gelderland participated in a panel at de European Congress of Local Governments in Krakow, on behalf of the Dutch Cycling Embassy.
The congress was visited by approximately 2.000 participants in total, mainly from Poland. During the congress, a large number of topics were discussed. Topics included air pollution, innovation and civil initiatives.
The topic of the panel discussion in which Mr. Augustijn participated was: ‘Cycling Friendly Regions - How to Develop Cycling Tourism?’ Cycling tourism is currently one of the most dynamically developing areas of qualified tourism in Europe. Bicycle is the best way to get to know the city. At the same time, it represents a low burden on the environment and nature. Cycling transport should be promoted both by entrepreneurs and local authorities. This requires the preparation of a functional cycling path system and bicycle parking.
The panel during the interactive panel discussion consisted of the following people:
Jitka Vrtalova, Marketing Coordinator of Cities for Cyclists Association from Czech Republic.
Jan Ferencak, the Mayor of the Сity of Kezmarok, Slovakia
Reindert Augustijn, Program Manager Traffic and Transport of The Province of Gelderland from The Netherlands
Darinka Jug, ZG Cycle Unit at the Office for Economy, Labour and Entrepreneurship from the Municipality of Zagreb in Croatia
Magdalena Gromniak, co-owner of Acro bike share from Warschau, Poland
Marcin Hyla, President of Cities for Bicycles from Poland (Moderator)
Cycling tourism is in many Eastern European countries the starting point for further investments in cycling. The focus on cycling is mainly used by local and regional governments in order to reduce air pollution and attract more tourists. On the other hand, there is a lot of discussion going on about financing bike sharing systems.
Through participation, the Dutch Cycling Embassy was able to show the Dutch perspective of cycling and its effect on tourism.