DUBAI – Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, has issued directives to transform Dubai into a bicycle-friendly city.
As part of implementing the directives, Dubai will introduce laws and legislation to promote cycling both as a sport and a means of environmentally friendly transport. Sheikh Hamdan urged authorities to adopt the global best practices and safety and security measures required to develop a bicycle-friendly infrastructure.
The announcement is in line with the objectives of Dubai Vision 2021, which aims to strengthen Dubai’s position as the world’s most preferred place to live, work and visit. It also supports the objectives of the Dubai Traffic Strategy 2021 that seeks to reduce road fatalities and the UAE Energy Strategy 2050’s aims at achieving a 16 percent reduction in carbon emissions by 2021 and transforming Dubai into the city with world’s lowest carbon footprint.
Sheikh Hamdan’s announcement came during Dubai Police’s ‘Cycling is a Lifestyle’ Innovation Lab organized at the Cycle Hub – Jumeirah. The event was held in partnership with The Executive Council of Dubai, Dubai Public Prosecution, Supreme Legislation Committee, Roads and Transport Authority, RTA, Dubai Sports Council, Department of Economic Development, DED, Emirates Cycling Federation, Dubai Municipality, UAE Insurance Authority, Board of Directors of Dubai Police Stations, Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services, cycling event organisers, real estate development partners, bike suppliers and the cycling community.
The ‘Cycling is a Lifestyle’ Innovation Lab was inaugurated by the Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police Lt. General Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri in the presence of Sheikh Marwan bin Mohammed bin Hasher Al Maktoum; Saeed Hareb, Secretary General of the Dubai Sports Council; Counsellor Salah Bu Farouch Al Falasi, Head of Dubai Traffic Prosecution; and senior officers and specialists representing Dubai Police’s strategic partners.
Participants recommended the formation of a task force comprising of RTA, Dubai Police, Dubai Sports Council and the Supreme Legislation Committee to steer Dubai’s development into a bicycle-friendly city by introducing a suitable infrastructure and legislative system and fostering a bicycle – friendly community culture.
They also recommended promoting joint efforts between various stakeholders to achieve these aims. The participants pledged to jointly work towards enhancing safety standards, improving perceptions of bicycle use, promoting the use of cargo bicycles, development of standards and policies, creating dedicated areas for bicycle use and promoting a bicycle renting culture.
The participants called for developing an infrastructure that not only safety but also provides cyclists a suitable atmosphere to engage in the activity. They also advocated the creation of safer crossing and more bicycle paths, provision of facilities and services on cycling tracks and organization of events and activities to motivate the public to use bicycles as a mean of transport.
Participants stressed on the need to develop a safety guide for cyclists, launch awareness and educational campaigns, and obligate driving institutes to promote bicycling among driving license applicants. They also discussed bicycle insurance and the public’s involvement in promoting local cycling events.
The attendees also highlighted the need for legislative integration between the UAE Traffic Law and local administrative decisions regarding the use of bicycles and the compatibility of infrastructure.