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Cycling Heroes Advancing sustainable Mobility Practice (CHAMP)

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The objective of the CHAMP-project was to bring together champion cities in the field of cycling policy. Groningen, Orebro, Bolzano, Edinburgh, Ljubljana and Burgos are leading cycling cities in their country or on European level. These cities have been improving cycling conditions since a long time and have a reasonably high share of cycling in the modal split. However, these cities started this project with the intention to upgrade and optimize their cycle policy. The CHAMP-project facilitated the exchange of best practices, experiences and lessons learned (good and bad ones!) within a group of "best in class" cycling cities. A CHAMP performance analysis tool was developed. Every CHAMP-city also developed a cycling strategy and implemented at least 2 innovative measures.The results of the CHAMP-project will be used to advise and inspire other European cities with the ambition of developing an integrated cycling policy. Special attention will be paid to transferring the CHAMP-results to cities in the eastern part of Europe and to areas where cycling has not been on top of the political agenda.


  • An increase of 10% of trips done by bike in the CHAMP-cities Groningen, Bolzano, Burgos, Örebro, Edinburgh, Ljubljana and Kaunas.
  • A CHAMP performance analysis tool is available (see 'key deliverables'). This tool offers an easy to use procedure for analyzing a city’s cycling strategy in order to fill the gaps.
  • Training workshops on involving citizens and on implementing bicycle measures are organized. CHAMP also offers an exchange program open to external cities. At least 20 cities outside the consortium will take part in these training sessions.
  • The CHAMP-catalogue will give advice and inspiration to all European cities on how to (further) improve their cycling policy. The catalogue will describe the overall cycling strategy of the leading cycling cities and will be an invitation for on-site visits in the CHAMP-cities.
  • Dissemination of the results to policy influencers and decision takers will raise the awareness on the economical, ecological and energy efficient benefits of increased bicycle use in cities. The long term effect of the CHAMP-project is an estimated reduction of 80.000 T CO2/year by 2020.

Lessons learned

  • Even cycling champion cities can still learn: A city like Groningen has a share of cycling of around 50%. During the project and especially thanks to the peer review visit, Groningen became aware that there are still some areas of improvement. Groningen introduced two innovative measures, one with regard to bicycle parking (a real challenge in the city centre) and one on smart marketing and information campaigns.
  • The power of the bicycle accounts: A bicycle account gives an overview of figures, data and ambition of a city with regard to cycling. The bicycle account is at the same time a monitoring tool but also a communication mean showing the interest and progress of cycling in a city. Two CHAMP-cities, Örebro and Ljubljana, developed a bicycle account. This process highlighted gaps in available data, and the cities became aware of the need of having measurable targets and monitoring instruments . In Örebro and in Ljubljana the bicycle account was used by policy makers to explain and motivate further investments in cycling measures. The Ljubljana bicycle account was the first in its kind in the southeastern part of Europe and can be an example for other cities in this region.
  • The importance of creating a bicycle culture: Well-designed cycling infrastructure is a condicio sine qua non, but creating a bicycle culture is equally important. It is important to communicate positively and involve relevant stakeholders.

Partners and coordinator

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Contact point: 
Bart Desmedt
0032 9 242 32 80
Meerschaert Vincent
0032 9 242 32 80


In brief

01/10/2011 to 30/09/2014
Contract number: 

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