Against the backdrop of the 9th meeting of the Urban Mobility Partnership in end-January 2019, the Urban Agenda for the EU Communications Team talked to the two Coordinators about the Partnership's state of play: Ms Anke Karmann-Woessner, representative of the City of Karlsruhe, and Mr Frantisek Kubes from the Czech Ministry of Regional Development recapitulate why they started working together within the Partnership and what their Action Plan is suggesting.
Watch the whole interview video with Anke Karmann-Woessner and Frantisek Kubes:
Could you please present your institution and tell us why you decided to join the Partnership?
Anke Karmann-Woessner (AK): Karlsruhe is a city of about 300,000 inhabitants and a city that grows a lot. For us, mobility is very important and crucial subject because we have to fit the spatial development with mobility solutions. The profile of Karlsruhe is very advanced regarding the issue of mobility. We have a lot of experience in regional mobility and transport systems with public transport. Also, we are quite advanced in the development of bike sharing and car sharing systems.
Frantisek Kubes (FK): The Czech Republic decided to join this Partnership as a Co-coordinator because it is a really important topic in our cities.
AK: Governance and multi-level cooperation is a very important subject because Karlsruhe is very near to the French border and also to the Swiss border, and to other Länder close to Baden-Württemberg. So we have to cooperate.
What is your Action Plan proposing?
FK: The Action Plan is covering a wide range of issues dealing with urban mobility, including governance, public transport, active modes of transport, and innovation in mobility.
AK: For example, access to public transport is one of our Actions in the Action Plan. It is very easy to manage when you are in the city centre, but in the suburbs, it is quite difficult, and there are few well-accessible public transportation options. We really have to develop that.
FK: A very important Action in our opinion is the Action about SUMPs – Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans – a concept that is already applied in many cities. But we know there is still some room for improvement, and that is why it is important that it is a topic in our Action Plan.
AK: A subject which is very important for us all is active mobility. We have Walk21 and the European Cyclists Federation on board. Especially for Karlsruhe, where 26% of citizens use the bicycle in the city centre, we have the chance to develop public space to use in another way than just being accessed by individual cars.
FK: We believe that Actions that are part of our Action Plan can be eligible for the next programming period, which is really important for European cities and regions.
Read the full Action Plan of the Urban Mobility Partnership.