On August 28th, the Society and Technology Research Group at Mercedes-Benz Daimler visited the office of DCE to ask our experts about their opinion and expectations regarding the developments of future mobility and the cycling challenges in Dutch cities.
The Society and Technology Group at Mercedes-Benz Daimler is analysing trends and developments in society in order to predict and imagine how we will live and work in a decade’s time.
The meeting was focused on the impact of bikes for future mobility in global perspective. After the introduction, our experts Erik Tetteroo (APPM), Terry de Zoete (Provincie Noord-Brabant) and Roger Heijltjes (Provincie Noord-Brabant) explained the advantages of cycling in the Netherlands on local as well as national level like solving a problem of accessibility of the cities, air pollution and health. The discussion continued on the topic of the need to convince workers by employee to use bike to get to work faster and in a healthy way. The more common use of e-bikes is giving employers an opportunity to overcome the longer distance to work and feel still comfortable. This trend is growing as a cheaper and healthier alternative than using car.
The next part of the interview was about the infrastructure in the Netherlands. Experts explained how infrastructure gives the priority to cyclists by creating shorter routes for bikes than car, implementing smart solutions using GPS signal to give the priority for cycling groups and how it can be helpful for cars to avoid bike traffics. The experts also discussed the concept of shared spaces (the Dutch concept of ‘woonerf’) and no-car zones by explaining how it can benefit city centres by creating as much as 30 times more space for bike infrastructure. The important aspect raised during the meeting was that a multimodal approach (combining different modes of transport over the course of one trip) gives the opportunity to people to reach city centres from suburbs especially in the context of commuting for work.
The last topics discussed by the experts was the potential of autonomous cars and the prospect their cohabitation with cyclists. They also shared their opinions on their vision of the future of urban and suburban development. Everybody agreed that using smart technologies can be an opportunity for safer mobility in the future.