With over 20 years of experience, Eco-Counter is the global leader in pedestrian and cyclist counting solutions. Their counting solutions count and classify pedestrians and cyclists using discreet, advanced, patented sensor technologies. Automated count data is a powerful tool to capture daily and seasonal usage trends, justify investments, communicate with stakeholders and much more.
From bike counters deployed on the busiest cycle tracks of Paris, to trail counters in remote regions of New Zealand, Eco-Counter is trusted around the world.
- What are you most excited about for 2021?
The context of the pandemic has accelerated the changes in bicycle use and perception in many countries, including France. Using our data, we have seen an increase in cycle usage in almost all the countries we looked at, in Europe & North America.
The overall perception of cycling has changed a lot this year, and very fast too. It is becoming a very efficient and competing mode of transport, with more and more examples across the world to prove you can cycle to move around!
What would have been considered impossible even a few years ago was actually done in 2020: temporary cycling facilities created in a few days, closure of traffic lanes to reclaim space for pedestrians and cyclists, etc. This is very impressive, and even if everything has not been made permanent, the examples that were given are remarkable.
But if we want to avoid the plateau, investments should be made in cycling facilities, and data is always key here to justify investments and communicate the figures.
The idea is not to say everyone must ride a bike, but simply to build our cities to give the possibility for people to do it: Paris is showing a great example with the “15-minute city” policy they are wanting to implement.
I’m also happy to see what e-bikes are bringing to the cycle revolution: in big cities, but most notably in rural areas, this mode is a very efficient solution to cope with transport issues.
- What do you see as a major challenge in the cycling industry and how can CIE play a role in overcoming that challenge?
As the market grows bigger, we see many actors coming in and surfing this “bicycle wave”. The challenge I see would be the capability of cycling industry to provide the same level of quality & expertise as the “car system” in Europe.
We have seen the success of national plans in France as well other countries to help with bike repair, bike sales and bike usage so we are hoping the European Union will lead this transition as well, and we trust the CIE to push in the right direction! Building best practices and standards for everything bicycle-related is something the CIE can help with, whether it be bicycle data of course, but also services & products.
CIE is, for me, our political voice in Europe to push investments in cycle policies, one of the most cost-effective investment you can make.
- What/who in the cycling industry inspires you?
The cities around the world making bold moves to free up space and create safe cycling infrastructures for everyone. I was truly amazed to see how quickly cities have been transforming this year, and it comes down to political will to move to a more bicycle friendly city.
Initiatives of the city of Paris and Mayor Anne Hidalgo were very inspiring of course, but we have seen this kind of fast changes happening also in smaller cities, which I find very encouraging as well! Tactical urbanism and popup bike lanes have really taken up as political topics this year.
On the entrepreneurial level, I find the entrepreneurs of cycle logistics to be truly inspiring. The initiatives are too many to list here but the work made in France with “Les Boites à vélo” or “Toutenvélo” for example are very impressive. They organize themselves as cooperative companies and prove that many deliveries made by vans or cars, out of comfort or habit, can be replaced by cargo bikes, for a cleaner air and more breathable cities.
For last mile delivery, and day-to-day logistics, the cargo bike is the vehicle of the future! And I’m convinced we have not yet seen everything…!
- Describe in 5 words how cycling is saving the world?
The most social way to get around!
* Want to hear more from Enrico? Catch him on 22 April at the #CIE2021Summit as a panellist on Cycling Leading the Green Recovery, register here!