Whilst the Spanish tradition of la siesta may not be as popular as it once was, the Spanish city of Seville we definitely not napping when they started construction of the bike network in 2006. Seville saw an 11-fold increase in cycling that was the result of a rapid infrastructure program that delivered 80km of fully separated bicycle lanes in just 18 months!
- In just five years, Seville’s cycling infrastructure expanded from 12 km of unconnected cycle paths in 2005 to 120 km of bike lanes, separated from traffic, in 2010.
- Most of these lanes are bidirectional, and built on former parking lanes but raised at the level of the sidewalk.
- In 2006, 25% of riders were women. In 2017, this proportion has risen to 36%
- The result was a network of cycle lanes that forever changed the landscape of the city. Plans were made to extend and increase the density of the network, which now covers 180 km.
- The use of bicycles increased more than fivefold, from approximately 13,000 daily trips in 2006 to 72,000 in 2011.
- Politicians’ support for major bike investment came from a single poll in 2006 that found that 90% of the people of Seville thought that cycling infrastructure would be good for Seville.
- Key to its success was being able to deliver an entire network within a single election cycle, building 80km in 18 months.
Key Project: Constructing 80km in 18 months
- The secret to Seville 11-fold increase in cycling was due to its ambitious program that delivered 80km of fully separated bicycle lanes in just 18 months for the cost of £32m
- “As soon as the building work was finishing and the fences were removed, the cyclists just came. The head of the building team, who’d been very sceptical about the process, called me and said, ‘Where have all those cyclists come from?’ That’s when I knew for sure it was going to work. They came from all over the city.” – José Garcia Cebrián, Seville’s Head of Urban Planning
- Seville’s challenge now is widening its existing network to accommodate further growth in cycling