Bikes in Italy: the recent boom



The study carried out by Legambiente and Irp Marketing
reveals that while in 2009 only 2,9% of Italian adult people rode their bike to
move around in the city, in 2011 this percentage has tripled up to 9%. This
means that 5 million people, i.e. almost one tenth of the population, use bikes
as means of transport in the city. The poll is also useful to understand the
cyclists’ customs and the differences between North and South. The results of
the poll tell us that the most “virtuous” people live in the North (is this
perhaps due to the flat and more inviting land and to the bigger amount of
bicycle paths?): only 1% of regular cyclists live in the southern regions and
in the islands, while in the central regions the percentage is near to 0. But
as far as occasional use is concerned, the percentage in the south increases up
to 23%, meaning that people are interested in this special type of
transportation, although it might be seen more like amusement and distraction
rather than a real alternative to cars and public transport. And this trend is
common all over Italy: 75% of the people who have taken part in the poll use
bikes only occasionally or never, while 25% consider biking as a pleasant way
to spend their free time. But the Italians’ opinion could change if more
attention was paid to the itineraries for cyclists and to the cycling paths:
43% of the interviewed people, indeed, told that one of the main obstacles in
using bikes is the lack of sufficient safe paths, while 42% would like a
traffic reduction. Also special parks for bikes are missing (as pointed out by
19% of people) as well as the possibility of getting on trains and other means
of public transportation with bikes.


In conclusion, it is undeniable that the Italians’
interest in bikes is growingArticle Search, but it might become greater with targeted
interventions in the Italian cities.