In downtown Basel, around 150 cyclists got on their bikes for the rally in the morning, as a photographer from the Keystone-SDA news agency reported. Among them were many families and children. They gathered at the Claramatte and drove about five kilometers long and two bridges over the Rhine to the Dreirosenpark.
Under the title “Kidical Mass”, the demonstrators appealed to cities and municipalities to think particularly of children and older cyclists when implementing the new Swiss cycle path law. These are dependent on an “forgiving” infrastructure that is separate from car traffic, it said.
After the use of bicycles by children has declined sharply in the last twenty years, it is important to reverse this “alarming trend” with better bicycle infrastructure, the demo organizers demanded in a statement. “If Switzerland wants to achieve its climate goals, it has to get more children on their bikes again,” said Jürg Buri, director of the national umbrella organization Pro Velo Switzerland, in the statement. “Because they are the staff of the climate-neutral cities of tomorrow.”
In March, three and a half years after the federal decree on cycle paths had been adopted by the electorate, the Swiss parliament passed the cycle path law. The bill obliges the cantons to plan a cycle path network within five years and to implement this within a further 15 years. Among other things, cycle path networks must be “in principle” connected and continuous, the paths should be safe and attractive.
Further bike demos were also planned for Saturday afternoon in the cities of St. Gallen and Zurich. Actions in Bern, Lausanne, Geneva, Thun BE and Baden AG are to follow on Sunday. According to the organizers, demos will take place over two days in over 200 locations in 15 countries under the motto “The street belongs to us”. (SDA)