EIT Urban Mobility, an initiative of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), a body of the EU, is proud to announce its partnership with the city of Heraklion and Civinet Greece-Cyprus, the network of Greek cities for mobility, to address urban mobility challenges.
This collaboration will bring a total of 13 innovative bike stations throughout the city at the end of November. An event to showcase the new biking facilities will take place Sunday 3 December at 11.00 a.m., at Georgiadis Park. Join the event: National innovation for cycling in Heraklion.
In the wake of the European Union’s recent Declaration on Cycling, announced just a few weeks ago as a major push for cycling across Europe, our partnership with the city of Heraklion takes on even greater significance. Heraklion is one of the leading Greek cities when it comes to the pedestrianization of the city centre, which in recent years has encouraged more pedestrian and bicycle travel. The city centre is a circle of approximately 350m radius and mostly pedestrianized. For this reason, the city believes it could encourage more commuters to use their bike or kick scooter instead of their private car when accessing to the city centre.
Exploring solutions, Heraklion is embarking on a strategic initiative to establish micro-mobility hubs throughout the city. As the largest city in Crete and the fourth-largest in Greece, with a population of around 174,000 residents (surging to nearly 1 million during the summer), Heraklion is dedicated to providing its citizens and visitors with safe, convenient locations to park their bicycles and e-bikes after their journeys.
At its core, this project aims to elevate active mobility, with a particular focus on micro-mobility and bike-mobility. The objective is to deploy secure and sustainable infrastructure for bike and kickscooter parking at strategically selected points throughout the city. These hubs, featuring a flexible modular design accommodating 4 to 10 bicycles and e-bikes, cater to both spontaneous parking and charging requirements for registered users. These infrastructure enhancements are envisioned to enhance the overall quality of life for Heraklion’s residents, contribute meaningfully to climate change mitigation efforts, and foster a more robust and dependable urban mobility sector. Two innovative solution providers have been selected for funding in this project:
- Rastel.io will deliver 10 units to be installed outside of the old town. These smart and secure bike parking hubs come equipped with e-bike charging capabilities and can be accessed through the Rastel.io mobile app.
- DonCicleto will provide 3 units to be installed in the old town. The Bikehangar, their modular and scalable bike and scooter parking solution, offers protection against vandalism, inclement weather, and theft.
Installation of these units is taking place during the month of November, with the facilities set to be operational by the end of November.
Safe bike parking facilities will encourage more cyclists to use e-bikes, which is expected to increase the number of cyclists for long peri-urban distance trips and trips to uphill destinations. This pilot implementation is funded for a period of six months. The success of these pilot installations will be evaluated at the end of the six-month period to gauge their effectiveness and assess the potential benefits of a long-term implementation of the tested solutions.
Vassilis Lambrinos, Mayor of Heraklion said: “We are participating in this initiative with the aim to encourage more people to choose the bicycle as a means of transportation. The promotion of Sustainable Mobility is always a policy priority for us.”
Gareth Macnaughton, Director of the Innovation at EIT Urban Mobility said: “EIT Urban Mobility is thrilled to collaborate with the city of Heraklion to tackle urban mobility challenges. We are proud to work with innovative solution providers Rastel.io and DonCicleto, whose leading solutions focus attention on Heraklion. These pilot installations will pave the way for a more sustainable and efficient urban mobility future in Heraklion.”
Maria-Paula Caycedo, Head of Innovation for Hub South: “Collaborating with Heraklion to implement the project will lead to many benefits. The programme allows a pilot fostering innovation and support the sustainable urban development of the city. EIT Urban Mobility is working in collaboration with cities like Heraklion to further foster Greece and Europe’s dynamic mobility development landscape.”