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Trouble in paradise: the cargo bike comes to the rescue in Groningen

In the run up to the International Cargo Bike Festival, which takes place in the city of Groningen this coming June, 14-16, RIPPL is taking a deep-dive and focussing on how cycle logistics works in this city of bikes.

Despite the fact that their city tops the charts of bike-friendly world cities, The city of Groningen realised that they needed to do even better. The status-quo was not an option. Back in 2014 this lead the Gemeente to decide that something had to be done to alleviate the situation.

Groningen signed the Green Deal Zero Emission City Logistics (Green Deal ZES), and agreed to investigate how emission-free city logistics could be put into practice.

Following on from this, the city of Groningen announced a new, more detailed plan of action in 2018. The so-called ‘Groningen Covenant for Sustainable City Logistics’ (Convenant Duurzame Stadslogistiek Groningen) introduced a 10-point plan designed to deliver what the Gemeente calls a ‘paradigm shift’ in how deliveries to the city centre are handled, and therefore achieve the 2025 goal of minimised emissions.

The 10-point plan includes items such as placing restrictions on delivery hours but is most notable as an example of municipal-level stimulation for cargo bikes and zero-emission transport. Carrot and stick. Whilst it’s not unique for a municipality to take such cargo bike-specific measures, few have ever put cargo bikes at the very heart of their plans in such a comprehensive way. Indeed, they want to facilitate and promote the opportunities of pedal-powered logistics to their fullest potential.

You will find more information at RIPPL #050 !!!


Photo: DHL - Pro-cyclist Bauke Mollema at the opening of the DHL CityHub in Groningen.