Today, BicipúbliCartago was inaugurated with a city-wide celebration attended by representatives of the national government, local universities, the Municipality of Cartago, the Dutch Embassy in Costa Rica, and A Foundation. The pioneer project for Costa Rica and Central America has been developed by the Municipality of Cartago in close collaboration with the Dutch Embassy in Costa Rica and A Foundation. A Foundation designed the bike rental stations, surrounding parks and plazas, the urban bicycles, and the campaign of this multistakeholder-project.
BicipúbliCartago aims at a sustainable urban development in Costa Rica, including the decongestion of urban transport, subsequent reduction of carbon emissions, improvement of health for its users, a more economic means of mobility, as well as an improvement of urban public space through high quality design. Throughout the first year, the public bike sharing system provides free access to bicycles for the students of Cartago. In 2016, after the system has been optimized based on the first users’ feedback, it will be made accessible to the general public.
Rolando Rodríguez, the Mayor of the City of Cartago, emphasized the importance of this project and its exemplary character for the country at large. He also informed that the initial cost of BicipúbliCartago has been covered entirely through the municipal income from fines for traffic violations committed by car owners. According to the Dutch Ambassador in Costa Rica Mette Gonggrijp, “the bicycle is an environmentally friendly means of transport that contributes to the life quality of people. This topic is crucial in the fight against climate change with its severe consequences worldwide.” The ambassador further emphasized the importance of targeting the first phase of the project at the students of Cartago, “the future leaders and examples of generations to come.”