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Dortmund calls on citizens to celebrate the success of emissions-free initiative

Dortmund calls on citizens to celebrate the success of emissions-free initiative

The Emissions-Free Inner City programme is coming to an end, leaving a cleaner and more human-friendly city

On 12 June, the City of Dortmund in Germany invited all citizens to take part in a festival celebrating the three-year-long cornerstone project Emissionsfreie Innenstadt (Emissions-Free Inner City). The Emissions-Free Inner City plan was launched in 2019 and aimed to entice citizens into ditching their cars in favour of sustainable modes of transportation like bikes and public transport.

Now, the package of measures that local authorities introduced and their funding is coming to an end and they want to celebrate the occasion with the FestiWall. During the event, citizens will have the opportunity to book entire tables and take part in discussions with neighbours as well as with city officials who headed the programme.

Furthermore, in the spirit of the celebration, the inner city and some adjacent districts will be off-limits for cars, including the entire ‘Wallring’ – a boulevard circling the heart of Dortmund. The Wallring is a crucial part of local traffic infrastructure, as it is the only major point of thoroughfare crossing the centre.

Climate Active Municipality 2021

One of the key measures local authorities introduced was a premium payment of 1,000 euros to households that choose to forego their car commutes for a week. After using bikes, public transport or walking for a week, people would receive the money as a subsidy for an e-cargo bike.

By 15 January 2022 more than 120 households had already applied for the programme. At the same time, the city wanted to use these early adopters as the face of an emissions-free city, by asking them to photograph their journey into sustainable mobility.

The initiative was deemed so successful in fact, that it made the German Federal Ministry for the Environment grant Dortmund the title of Climate Friendly Municipality 2021. The title itself was created by the German government to stimulate local authorities to boost their sustainable practices.

Also, it comes with additional funding to the tune of 25,000 euros, which, local authorities, decided to use for additional cargo bike hand-outs.  

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