Cycling isn’t something just for students and environmentalists anymore. During the last few years cycling has grown, filled Swedish streets and become a must-have even for trendy citydwellers.
For those who haven’t got their own bike, there are city-sponsored bicycle-programs in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Lund .
In Stockholm you can use the bike for three hours, before having to return it to one of the stations. In Gothenburg you can have your bike for 30 minutes at a time. Lund’s program allows you to rent a bike up to one week.
Cycling has also gone from being “just” a leisure thing to a daily transport vehicle for many people. In Stockholm the amount of cyclists have more than doubled in 15 years and now about 50 000 cyclists use the city’s streets every day. This is great in many ways, but also leads to new dilemmas. Suddenly there isn’t room foreveryone, since roads are mainly planned for car traffic.
This has lead to new ideas. Recently local politicians suggested cyclists in Stockholm should have the right to jump the red lights in right-hand turns or cycle both ways on one-way streets, in order to make the traffic flow better. Some, like the cyclists’ organisation Cykelfrämjandet, are very positive to these ideas, while others (mainly car drivers?) mean that having the right to skip certain laws only would make cyclists even more anarchist than today…
In June, Gothenburg had its own bicycle festival for all kinds of bike enthusiasts. Watch this film from the event, with interviews in both Swedish and English:
More about this in Swedish media (in Swedish):
Not more accidents despite more cyclists
Not enough bicycle tracks
The police is critical against letting cyclist jump the red lights