Not a Car in the world

The car free-movement is now more apparent than ever, with car-free developments a feature of many major European cities. Malmö, Sweden’s third largest city, is peddling the movement. Cykelhuset in Malmö is a development ‘engineered to support a car-free lifestyle’ reflecting the growing popularity of this way of life. Cykelhuset or ‘bike house’ opens in Malmö this December and will be the country’s first residential complex with no parking spaces attached to it.

The development challenges one-unit one-space design principles, advocating cycling as the primary mode of transport instead. The seven-storey building, designed by Hauschild + Siegel Architects, will include a large indoor bike-parking area with wide elevators, balconies and doors to accommodate bicycles. Each apartment within the development will be equipped with an extra-large mailbox where residents can receive items too large to carry on a bicycle. The first floor will contain 34 rooms that can be used for nightly rentals. Each of these rooms comes with a bike, which visitors can collect from the nearby train station, ride to Cykelhuset and use throughout their stay.

There are a number of benefits available to residents of Cykelhuset;

  1. A mobility subscription allows residents to make use of a local car-pool service
  2. A certain number of free bus trips and train journeys per month
  3. Free yearly bike tune-ups and repairs offered on site

As well as promoting a sustainable lifestyle, the building has been designed to leave a ‘shallow environmental footprint’. Solar energy provides heat and hot water, and a shared greenhouse collects rainwater which is used throughout the development.

However, the idea has attracted some criticism. Firstly, the lack of parking provision within the development may encourage residents to park elsewhere, increasing on-street parking. Secondly, those who visit the development may rely on cars to get there, and the development will still attract delivery and servicing vehicles.

What are your thoughts on car-free developments? Do you think similar schemes will be effective in cities across the UK? Let us know your thoughts by tweeting us @PBAtravel

Information and image source: http://www.citylab.com

AK

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