Extract from the interview with Mayor Peter Todeskino und Bicycle Coordinator Uwe Redecker in Kiel on 28 September 2016
Duration: 20 min
Kloss: How do you get people on bikes in Kiel?
Todeskino: We quite succeeded to get the people of Kiel on bikes. We do have a small decline in the modal split concerning the share of cyclists, but we once had 23%. With our measures we try to reach 25%. The newest figure is 17%, considering only the domestic traffic it’s 19%. We conducted many campaigns, built bicycle paths, park&ride stations at the train station etc.
Kloss: What is the future of urban mobility?
Todeskino: I am not a car affine person and go very little by car, still I think the car will be in the future, but powered electric or with hydrogen. I think there will be a renaissance of the hydrogen car. Then there is the question if we want to drive ourselves or use autonomous driving systems … and car sharing is certainly playing a role.
The rest will be „broken traffics“ (multimodal behaviour). We built hitchhiking stations at highways, and the new mobility strategy is clearly focused on fostering cycling. We build our first bicycle highway, 3,6 km, to get people in 10 min to university etc.
Important is also the renaissance of trams and regional trains, we have a new mobility concept with regional connection, because more than 60.000 commuters are congesting our streets.
Kloss: Do you have quantitative longterm goals concerning urban cycling?
Todeskino: A share of 30% until 2025. Ambitious. I am originally from Münster which has a share of cyclists of 46%. And it is also quite hilly in Kiel.
Kloss: Is the City of Kiel trying to reduce the car traffic?
Todeskino: Kiel was very destroyed in the war, to 90%. Much was torn down and big streets were built through the city. We are not excluding the car traffic but pushing it back to the main traffic arteries. I do not like it so much to condemn car traffic and to build up fronts.
Redecker: Bicycle streets are the best we can offer and expect a maximum of respect of car drivers. And we try to attract people to cycling, to go by bike to the beach etc.
Kloss: How about bike-friendly buildings?
Todeskino: There are two hearts in my breast. I like to put my bicycle in my appartment and where I get off the bike. I think all these discussions for extra parking possibilities are exaggerated, when they are inside of buildings – then it’s ok.
Kloss: How about mininum parking rates for bikes?
Todeskino: Yes we have that, but that’s federal law.
Kloss: For instance in Vienna they built a building with two bike parkings per person.
Redecker: I have the impression all builders are integrating bike parkings voluntarily in new buildings, there is no discussion about it, because of the demand and the streets are full of bicycles.
Todeskino: I don’t understand how a city with an historical center can tolerate cars to dominate the townscape.