France is to invest €250million in push bike infrastructure by 2023, the prime minister’s office has said, as part of a wider investment plan that began in 2018.
The plan was first announced as a €350million project in 2018, with a schedule reaching until 2025.
An ‘interministerial bike committee’ will be launched this autumn. It will meet every six months and will bring together all the ministers concerned, to implement bike-friendly changes.
Part of the project will include the ‘active mobility fund’, which will finance infrastructure, in partnership with local authorities, in a bid to ensure that investments are targeted and effective.
The prime minister’s office said: “[The plan] will be endowed with €250 million for 2023; €200 million will be dedicated to infrastructure and €50 million to parking.
"The multi-year budget has yet to be defined, as it will be part of the overall plan for transport infrastructure.”
The plan is set to increase the number of bike lanes, maintain the existing lanes, improve routes, and overall make it easier for people to travel by bike.
Continuation of the ‘plan vélo’
Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne appears to be continuing a project that was first announced while she was transport minister, under former-PM Edouard Philippe, in 2018.
The national ‘plan vélo’ provided for a €350million fund over seven years (2018-2025), and benefited from €150million extra as part of the ‘relaunch’ plan after the height of the Covid pandemic.
Read more: €350m for bike commuter plan
The Ecology Ministry has said that successful projects have already been put in motion as a result of the fund.
It said: "The first five calls for projects launched between 2019 and 2022 were a great success, with 933 winning projects, for a total of €365 million in grants.
A total of 599 districts were thus able to benefit from support for projects to maintain existing cycle paths, create safe cycle routes, and reduce route interruptions.”
The cycle plan will also aim to extend the ‘learn to ride a bike’ scheme in primary schools. Already, 160,000 children have taken part in the lessons over the past three years. The plan is now set to be extended until at least 2027.