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KCC 2020 Cycle Action Day

In the year 2000, a plan was proposed plan to build a bicycle lane from Maitighar to Tinkune. In 2005, the government decided to construct a 44 km long bicycle track around the city after signing the Velo Mondial Charter and Action Plan for Bicycle Friendly Communities. The charter provided a blueprint that set directives to promote bicycles as an efficient and environment friendly alternatives to motorised transport. Later, the state also announced another ambitious plan to build cycle lanes on all roads in the valley which are over 22 metres wide.”

Nearly a decade has passed and a whole new 6 lane highway has already been built. But there is still no cycling lane in sight. It seems like the heights of procrastination has been hiked up to a whole new level by our government. Conditions dropped down to new embarrassing lows when an internationally renowned wildlife biologist and environment conservationist, Prahlad Yonzon, was hit by a truck while cycling back home. But sadly, even his demise has not been able to jolt the government into action. Not only this, but it seems that the Yonzon has lost the case in court as well.

 

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Nevertheless, in an effort to reduce Kathmandu’s growing air pollution and promote a cycling culture, a passionate group of youth has set out to make the capital a cycle-friendly city by the year 2020 – Kathmandu Cycle City (KCC) 2020. The group formed by Kathmandu University students in 2009, have been actively promoting cycling through various events and workshops. KCC, along with World Cyclist Foundation Nepal, Nepalese Youth for Climate Action, Cycle City Network Nepal, Come On Youth Stand Up, Nepal Youth Council, Bibekshil Nepali Manch, Step for Miles and Rotaract Club organized a Cycle Action Day on the 1st of December 2012. The main aim was to pressurize the government and relevant authorities to finally begin building a cycle lane from Maitighar to Tinkune. And with the road expansion plans working in full swing, there could not be a better time to urge the government to put their decade old plans into action.

A cycle mosaic was followed by a bicycle parade during the event where World Cyclist/Mt. Everest summiteer Pushkar Shah requested the government of Nepal to make cycle lane on the possible areas. The event successfully ended with Chief Secretary of Government of Nepal, Mr. Lilamani Poudyal, assuring cyclists that the needful would be done very soon. Let’s hope that this promise won’t be pushed back another decade.

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