Orléans is organizing “A Gentle Sunday”, its first car-free day on 18 September

A day without a single car, or almost, driving in the center of Orléans.
For the first time, the city organizes a day without motorized vehicles, in a particular sector, on Sunday 18 September. But above all, she does not want to be summed up like that.

In Olivet, l’Éphémère, a secret café on the banks of the Loiret

“Because it’s simplistic, and it was not at all the message from the collaborative workshop that worked on it for a year,” explains Romain Roy, deputy mayor in charge of sustainable development. It’s a “gentle Sunday” (name of the operation)10am to 6pm to promote soft mobility, walking, cycling, etc. and the coexistence of forms of travel.

From 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in two-thirds of the city center

Specifically, only police or emergency vehicles will be able to circulate in two-thirds of the intra-mails, including the Loire quays, east of rue Royale and rue de la République.

That public transport will be free That day.

Organized during Sustainable Heritage Days and during “European Mobility Week”, the operation begins, after Assizes of the ecological transition, a first (small) step towards reducing the car’s space in Orléans. But in collaboration with merchants who have been affiliated. Some could also open that day.

What does the management contract for the large CO’Met plant in Orléans say?

Careful, “without robbing the merchants”

“It’s a first edition, a first step,” Romain Roy continues. We have to keep up with these changes, because we know that the car will naturally disappear from the cities within twenty years. But I prefer to do things gently, without antagonizing vulnerable populations (traders). We are not yet at the level, but we will not catch up with the thirty years where nothing has been done.

Information stands, but also bicycle markings should be installed in the old center. A sector where the car seems to have gradually regained its rights in recent months.

There were countless four-wheeled cars parked at any time of the day in these narrow alleys that are usually closed to motorized vehiclesexclusive authorized professionals and local residents.

Enforce the rules

“There has been a great regression, it is true,” admits Romain Roy. “But we took a new order ten days ago (June 27). There is a recovery in hand to enforce the rules and I can testify to that because I was with the municipal police and the deputy mayor in charge of security, Florent Montillot. “

The city also plans to install anti-noise radars on the quays in the Loire that were hoped for before the end of 2022.

Thierry Deraime, President of the Union of Trades and Industries of the Loiret Hotel Industry (Umih 45), responds positively to the prospect of a car-free day: “The aim is also to highlight our merchants. We want to send a message to our members to find out of whether they want to be open or not.Restaurants, bars and shops that are open will be shown on a map. If it was all the time, it would be awkward. But it will be an event, an idea for an excursion, a special day … Everyone is thinking of having fewer cars in the city. “

Florent Buisson

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