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​All set for first-ever Jozi Cycling Week

It’s all systems go for the launch of the City of Johannesburg’s first-ever cycling week on Monday.
Called the Jozi Cycling Week, the event – which runs until Sunday March 22 – is aimed at demonstrating the City’s commitment to turning Johannesburg into a cycle friendly city.

Executive Mayor Councillor Parks Tau, an avid cyclist himself, has been leading the charge to promote cycling and walking among residents as viable alternatives to help reduce the city’s carbon footprint. Several exciting activities have been lined up in partnership with the cycling fraternity to mark the week.

The City has already initiated the construction of dedicated cycle lanes and improved sidewalks as part of its commitment to creating a non-motorised transport environment in Johannesburg. Events to mark the Jozi Cycling Week include cycling activations in Orlando East, Diepsloot, Braamfontein and Sandton CBD, a two-day seminar on creating best practice cycling infrastructure and a national conference on creating cycling friendly cities.

All this will culminate in the third 20km Freedom Ride – between Sandton, Alexandra, Houghton and surrounding suburbs – on Sunday March 22.

This week-long cycling initiative follows two successful Freedom Rides that attracted more than 5 000 riders. Apart from the health benefits, cycling reduces traffic congestion and creates an eco-friendly environment.

Member of the Mayoral Committee for Transport Councillor Christine Walters says the City is working with cycling associations and activists to plan a rollout of future cycling infrastructure. She says cyclists’ safety and awareness of their rights as road users are a top priority. Jozi Cycling Week is being staged in partnership with stakeholders such as Cycle Jozi Forum, Hollard Insurance, Qhubeka, the national and provincial departments of transport and the Johannesburg Urban Cyclists Association.

The opening leg of the Jozi Cycling Week will be a 2.5km activation ride from Fourways to Diepsloot on Monday.

On Tuesday, Soweto residents will take to the newly constructed cycle lanes in Orlando East. During lunch hour on Wednesday, cyclists will ride along the newly constructed cycle lanes in Braamfontein. 
On Friday, #Decongest will launch the “Cycle Fridays” campaign for Sandton residents. A number of workshops and seminars will also be held. These include a training workshop on designing cycling infrastructure for engineers and planners on Wednesday and Thursday.

On Friday, the Department of Transport will host a National Cycle Cities workshop at Orlando Stadium, Soweto. Registration for the Freedom Ride can be done on or on the FreedomRideJozi Facebook page.