Walk, bike, car: Strasbourg’s mayor unveils his vision of tomorrow’s city

Proposed reconstruction of the Turckheim quay (© City of Strasbourg)

Recently, during a press conference, the EELV Mayor of Strasbourg, Jeanne Barseghian, outlined her “vision of the city of tomorrow”.

For the elected representative, there is a “need to take a new step in the transformation of our city in order to better adapt to current uses and anticipate future uses”.

A “need and an imperative for the sustainability of our cities,” specifies the environmentalist mayor, who cites the climate emergency and the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on the subject.

The car in last position in the hierarchy of forms of travel

Through its pedestrian plan, adopted in 2021, the city of Strasbourg has indicated its hierarchy of forms of travel: first the pedestrian, then the bicycle, then public transport, then the private car.

The multimodal ring project, whose work is due to begin in the summer of 2023 and end in 2026, reflects this spirit.

A “ring” around the Big Island to “reduce conflicts between users” …

This is a redevelopment of the perimeter of the Grande-Île “which will allow the different types of mobility (pedestrians, cyclists, public transport users and motorists) to develop in spaces that are better identified, calmer, qualitative and designed to reduce the incidence of conflicts between users, ”boasts the Municipality in a press release.

With a total length of 3.9 kilometers, the ring will run north along the lower quays, which bypass the island ellipse. To the south, it will connect Ponts-Couverts with Pont-Saint-Guillaume, which crosses the Strasbourg Civil Hospital and the Krutenau district.

The city of Strasbourg

… And relieve the city center of bicycle traffic

“The ring is a project for global rebalancing of public space,” sums up Sophie Dupressoir, a city council member in charge of cycling and walking. “The quays’ place, which runs along the island, will be dedicated to pedestrians, cyclists and public transport, whereas a large part today is circulated with motorized vehicles,” she explains. “Motorized traffic will not be banned, but will be reserved for deliveries, authorized vehicles and local residents,” she adds.

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The ring is specially designed to allow cyclists to bypass the city center, a “place of excitement” as it concentrates on “extremely diverse uses”, Ms Barseghian points out.

The city center will be significantly relieved for its bicycle flow and regain a kind of tranquility that it no longer has today.

Sophie Dupressoirmunicipal councilor

“Then in this space, which has thus been reorganized, there will be both a pedestrian promenade and a quality cycle path, separated from the pedestrian stream”, continues Mrs Dupressoir, who wants to make this project “a showcase for the way we design. The public space for active modes of transport ”.

Proposed redevelopment of rue des Glacières
Proposed redevelopment of rue des Glacières

Rearrange the car park …

Second major project for the ecological town hall: the issue of parking.

Also in this case, the municipality wants a better division of public space. Put another way, she would like the public space to be less devoted to the car than it is today. Here again to support current and future uses.

“At the moment, the organization of parking is not satisfactory,” said Pierre Ozenne, Strasbourg’s deputy mayor in charge of common public spaces and parking.

In the city center, and in the larger city center, there are gradually many people walking around in circles, many residents looking for solutions to store their cars, and the same residents who also demand street spaces that are more comfortable, more overgrown, where one can move to safety, without being bothered between the pedestrian and the cyclist, on extremely narrow sidewalks because there is still a lack of on-street parking on the other.

Pierre-OzenneDeputy Mayor of Strasbourg

… And prefers “vertical parking”

The elected representative especially wants to favor “vertical parking”. Understand: Parking in multi-storey car parks – also called multi-storey car parks – rather than on the road.

In that sense, he mentions three projects for the construction of new car parks: one in the Neustadt sector, one in the Neudorf sector and one last in the Green Mountain sector.

In addition, City Hall has previously announced this: In the longer term, the price of resident parking will increase, so it “is attractive to park your car in a parking lot”, explains Jeanne Barseghian. To date, we do not know the exact size of this increase.

Extension of the high-level service bus line

Another project put forward by the municipality: the extension of the high service bus line G, from the main railway station to the Bassin des Remparts.

“The expansion takes the boulevards Metz, Nancy, Lyon, then the quays Pasteur, Fustel, Taffel, the quay of the Alps and finally the quay of the Belgians,” the city details in its press release.

“This line will serve all the major local and regional services,” said Alain Jund, Vice President of Eurometropolis in charge of mobility. “Today, to go to Hautepierre hospital, 3/4 of people take the train and the tram. Tomorrow, to go to the university hospitals in Strasbourg or to the primary health insurance fund, we take the tram and the bus connection at a high level,” he illustrates.

Commissioning is scheduled for 2023. 30,000 passengers a day are expected on the extended line.

To proceed: ZFE, REM, the cycle plan, extension of the tram …

Whether it is the size of the city or Eurometropolis, other mobility projects can be mentioned.

We could mention the Low Emission Zone (ZFE), a device that aims to limit the circulation of the most polluting vehicles within a defined perimeter. We could remember the city’s bike plan, which in particular allows for an additional 120 kilometers of bike paths. We could talk about the expansion of the tram network, the Metropolitan Express Network (REM) project or even detail the pedestrian plan approved by the city. You can also get an overview of each of these projects right here.

In short, both the city of Strasbourg and Eurometropolis have made mobility one of the priorities of their mandate, and they intend to transform the territory and its uses in this way.

“Standing still on the morning of climate change is a regression”

“Today, Strasbourg has this legitimate reputation as a city in front of the issue of pedestrianization of public spaces, of a green city, a city in front of active mobility, especially cycling and public transport. Collective”, declares the city mayor, referring to among others the “proactive tram policy “in the 1990s or” the pedestrianization of the Quai des Bateliers “under the previous mandate.

“It’s all going in the right direction,” she remarks before qualifying, “but it’s clear to us that for us, Strasbourg could not just rest on its laurels. tomorrow, is a regression ”.

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