As part of its "Riding into the Future" campaign, the Tour de France is this year launching the "Ville à Vélo du Tour de France" label with the aim of encouraging all initiatives taken by municipalities in favour of everyday cycling. Candidacy for the label is open to all communities that have hosted the Tour de France at least once since its creation in 1903. Four levels of labelling have been defined, according to criteria listed by experts from the French Federation of Bicycle Users (FUB) and will take into account the specific characteristics of both large cities and rural municipalities.
The time has come to change gears. Although the proportion of daily journeys made by bicycle has been increasing significantly for several years, these are only the first results of the efforts made by the vast majority of French municipalities and communities to develop non-motorized mobility. In addition to its role as a flagship event in competitive cycling, the Tour de France is committed to the promotion of daily cycling: all the measures carried out in this domain over the last decade have convinced the organisers that the aggregation of wills makes this commitment effective. To encourage local actors to continue their work in this direction, the Tour de France proposes to award a bicycle-friendly label to communities that wish to assert their conviction. More than 700 French and foreign municipalities that have hosted at least one stage finish or start can answer the call for candidacies launched this week.
Four levels of labelling will be symbolised by small yellow bicycles appearing on the signs that the municipalities will install at their city limits. The labelling criteria takes into account the development strategy for cycling infrastructure, concrete actions to support cycling (learning in schools, awareness campaigns, rides, etc.) and the support provided to clubs and various associations involved in the sport of cycling in their area. The great disparity in resources between large cities such as Paris or London and rural municipalities of a few hundred residents will naturally be taken into account when attributing the label, as Karine Bozzacchi, coordinator of the operation, explains: "For a small municipality, it is sometimes difficult, for example, to undertake work to build a bicycle path. On the other hand, the definition of ‘30 kph zones’ in certain neighbourhoods clearly shows the desire to encourage cycling”.
The timetable of the campaign:
• 3 February: start of the candidacy period
• 15 March: deadline for receipt of applications
• 31 March: scrutiny of paperwork by a group of experts in cycling mobility
• 14-15 April: jury deliberations
• 3 May: announcement of selected communities
Find out more about this new label