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Socio-spatial dimensions of how to make a city bicycle-friendly: the case of Kayseri, Turkey

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Traditional transport policies based on automobile usage are regarded as no longer sustainable all over the world and governments are seeking new methods to encourage other modes of transportation such as walking, cycling and public transport. In Turkey, there is a big increase in the awareness of importance of the sustainable and integrated urban transport in the last ten years. Cycling in Turkish cities has also increasing importance both in national and local level. Parallel to this interest, the Ministry of Environment and Urbanism released a new regulation about the design and construction of bicycle paths, bike stations and tracks within the city in 2015. In addition to this, governmental bodies have been carried out a number of projects that aimed to encourage bicycle usage. This willpower has also influenced local authorities to make cities more bicycle-friendly. Kayseri is a middle-sized Central Anatolian city with approximately one million population. The city has been doubled its population in the last 20 years and it is still growing rapidly. The local government has been built 34 km tramlines and 35 bike-sharing stations within the city and tried to integrate bike stations with tram stops. However, the overall development of the city is still automobile-oriented and the modal share of bicycles in daily commuting is almost zero. There are also safety problems for cyclists in the city. Within this study, we aimed to examine the bicycle experience of the city from socio-spatial perspective and evaluate it according to the Copenhagenize Index criteria. Within this scope we will firstly reveal the existing condition in terms of bicycle infrastructure and bicycle usage in Kayseri. Secondly we will evaluate the experiences of cyclists in the city. For this, we conducted a survey with 125 active cyclists that cycle in daily base. We asked them both the physical conditions in the city and their experiences of cycling. Finally, we will propose a framework to be able to become bicycle friendly city.
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Book of proceedings: Annual AESOP Congress, Spaces of Dialog for Places of Dignity, Lisbon, 11-14th July, 2017
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