While Copenhagen continues to be a worldwide leader in cycling—the number of bikes in the Danish capital recently surpassed cars in fact—London is busy playing catch up.
Earlier this week, newly-elected London mayor Sadiq Khan announced that a record £154 million (roughly $194 million) per year will go toward cycling improvements over the next five years. This investment will take up 5.5 percent of the Transport for London (TfL) budget, more than double the 2.4 percent spent during former mayor Boris Johnson’s last term. All divvied up, that would mean about $22 per person per year, which is comparable to what’s being spent in leading cycling countries like Denmark and the Netherlands.
According to the statement, the city hopes to get 1.5 million bike trips per day by 2026 and the plan is to get there with more bike lanes, pedestrian crossings, increased sidewalk space, not to mention two new “Cycle Superhighways.” These structures will help commuters cover long distances on bikes.
"Making cycling safe and easier can provide huge benefits for us all—improving our health, cleaning up our toxic air, and helping tackle congestion,” says Khan.
This isn’t the only sustainability-minded news coming out of the English capital lately. Last week, Khan also announced that, effective immediately, all single-decker buses will be emissions-free, powered by hydrogen fuel cells instead of gas.