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Govt. launches cycling challenge for cities

Photo for representation.

Photo for representation.   | Photo Credit: R. Ravindran

With public transport in cities affected due to the spread of COVID-19, the Union Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry on Friday invited cities to come up with quick solutions for promoting cycling.

The ‘India Cycles 4 Change Challenge’ and an online portal for cities to submit their proposals was launched by the Smart Cities Mission of the Ministry. Apart from the 100 cities implementing the Smart Cities Mission, cities with population of over 5 lakh and capitals of States and Union Territories can apply.

“In October 2020, 11 cities will be shortlisted and will receive ₹1 crore award and guidance from national and international experts to further scale-up the initiatives in stage two, which will be held until May 2021,” the Ministry said in a statement.

“The challenge aims to help cities connect with their citizens as well as experts to develop a unified vision and initiatives to promote cycling,” the online portal stated.

Cities would be encouraged to create extensive cycling networks using low-cost methods like pop-up cycle lanes and non-motorised zones and set up community-led cycle rental schemes. These short-term measures could be converted into permanent ones later.

After its launch by Smart Cities Mission Director Kunal Kumar in an online event, the mission tweeted that the challenge would be in two States — implementation of pilot projects for cycling by all cities that register and scaling up the interventions by cities selected based on their proposals.

The programme would be supported by the India Programme of the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy, which will be the knowledge partner, it said. The cities shortlisted for the challenge would be announced on October 28.

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Printable version | Aug 9, 2020 5:18:59 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/govt-launches-cycling-challenge-for-cities/article32046545.ece

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