With Bremen’s state election looming next year, and the Greens riding high in the polls, there is a very real chance that they will form a strengthened half of any new coalition. With the two old parties declining in popularity, there is even the prospect of a Green-led government. With this in mind, we recently interviewed Ralph Saxe, transport spokesperson for the Bremen Greens, to see what they have in mind for the coming legislature.
The Greens’ position on transport policy is summarised here (German text). But recently they came out with a call for more public money for cycling and walking (German text).
English subtitles available. Click the subtitles icon towards the bottom right of the screen.
The Greens are calling for a quadrupling of funding for cycling, to around € 26 per inhabitant per year from 2020. This compares modestly with the current spending on motor traffic, at more than €100 per inhabitant. Note: Copenhagen spent 35.6€ per inhabitant for years. There is also a call for more focus on walking, with the creation of a specific walking budget for the first time.
The Greens’ official press release quotes Ralph Saxe:
“The transformation of Bremen to a cycling city must continue to progress so that even more people saddle up. At present, the financial resources are neither sufficient for the maintenance of already existing cycleways, nor for ambitious projects such as the planned Premium Cycle Route. That has to change with improved funding from 2020 onwards. In view of the immense expenditure on motor traffic, cycling and walking are miles away from genuine equal rights, even with a significant increase in funding. It is therefore also necessary to have consistent car parking management, in order to use the revenues to further improve public transport and the infrastructure for cycling and walking. In view of the worsening climate crisis, we must give the traffic revolution more momentum. The city benefits from the fact that more people cycle or walk: the noise pollution decreases, the air quality improves and the quality of life increases. “