Capital Region of Denmark REGIONAL CYCLING REPORT Capital Region of Denmark ...

Capital Region of Denmark


Capital Region of Denmark

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50 Foreword

60 Regional differences: we cycle in the Capital Region of Denmark

10 Cycling is healthy

13 Cycling reduces traffic congestion

14 Cycling helps the climate

18 Statistical Report for 2012

20 Capital Region of Denmark: a strong cycling region

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This is the first regional cycling report ever published in the world. The
report provides key figures and knowledge about regional cycling trends
and improves our ability to monitor and influence developments in the area
of cycling.

In the Capital Region of Denmark, our vision is to become a green, innova-
tive metropolis with good conditions for cycling, to benefit high growth and
quality of life. Our objective is to increase bicycle commuting by 38% from
2012 to 2020.

In 2012, 30% of all commuter trips in the Capital Region were made by bicycle.
We want to increase this to 41% by 2020.

The Regional Cycling Report focuses on regional cycling patterns, possibilities
and challenges. It confirms our belief that cycling is a win–win cause. The
figures speak for themselves – read them for yourself.

Cycling accounts for 20% of all trips within the Capital Region, and the number
of bicycle trips increased by 9% in the period 2007–2012. As a result, we
save one million days of sick leave a year. Our daily cycling trips improve our
health, our ability to concentrate and our productivity.

The many kilometres we cycle, instead of taking the car, bus or train, reduce
carbon emissions to the atmosphere by 110,000 tonnes a year. Increasing
the bicycle’s market share from 6.8% to 7.8% would save an additional
16,000 tonnes a year. We are not really complaining.

But we do have room for improvement, and there is quite a way to a bicycle
commuting percentage of 41%. Most bicycle trips are short, i.e. less than
5 km. Could we increase the number of medium to long trips? And could
we become even better at combining the use of the bicycle with bus, train,
metro or shared car?

It would also be preferable if the cycling percentages
didn’t fall so sharply outside the Capital Region.
Just how big a difference can there be between
someone living in Copenhagen proper, someone
in North Zealand and someone in Greater West
Copenhagen. Perhaps we could encourage more
suburban cycling by improving and boosting cycling
conditions and the cycling culture even more?

The alarm bells are ringing: our roads don’t have the
capacity for more cars, our hospitals are bulging
with patients suffering from lifestyle ailments, and
the air we breathe must not become more polluted
than it already is.

In two years, we will update the cycling report, and
we hope to have raised the bar slightly in the interim.

In addition to this brief edition of selected figures
from 2007–2012, a comprehensive background
report has also been prepared, containing all the
statistics for our cycling report, should you have the
desire to delve deeper into the details.

Sophie Hæstorp Andersen
Chairwoman of the Regional Council

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We cycle in the Capital Region of
The residents of the Capital Region of Denmark are fond of cycling. And the cycling experience differs, depending
on where in the region you cycle. Cycling in Copenhagen’s inner city, with 7,247 inhabitants per km2, is vastly
different from cycling in Gribskov Municipality, with 145 inhabitants per km2.

Cycling is doing well

The number of bicycle trips in Denmark increased by 9% from 2007 to 2012.
But there are big geographical differences. In Copenhagen–Frederiksberg,
the number of cycling trips increased by 19%. In the suburbs, the increase
was 9%. In the region’s other municipalities, however, there is an entirely
different picture. Here, the number of cycling trips has actually decreased:
by 22% from 2007 to 2012.










Cph + Frb Suburbs Other

Cph + Frb Suburbs Other

2008 2009 2010 2011 2012

Capital Region


Mill. bicycle trips per year, 2007–2012

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Competing modes of transport

What mode of transport do residents of the Capital Region of Denmark
choose for getting to work, school or recreational activities? The car is chosen
for almost 50% of these trips, while the bicycle is used for around 22%.

Geographically, the picture is clear. The further away from Copenhagen, the
less the bicycle is used. In the Copenhagen–Frederiksberg area, the bicycle is
the preferred mode of transport for roughly 32% of the trips. In the suburbs,
bicycles are used for 19% of the trips. In the region’s other municipalities, the
share is 10%.

Breakdown by mode of transport in 2012, the whole region

Breakdown of trips by geographical area

Bicycles are used
for one in five trips
in the Capital Region









Public transport

Public transport

Specified by trip

Cph + Frb Suburbs Other

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Cycling is healthy
The people of the Capital Region of Denmark
are active cyclists

The inhabitants of the Capital Region of Denmark cycled a total of 3.5 million
km per day in 2012. As we cycled 2.8 million km per day in 2007, this is a
25% increase.

The most active cyclists in 2012 were in Copenhagen and Frederiksberg,
cycling 3.4 km per person per day. In 2007, this same figure was only
2.7  km. In the region’s suburban municipalities, residents cycled 2.1 km
per person per day, a slight increase from 2 km in 2007. In the region’s
other municipalities, residents cycled 1.1 km per day in 2012, against only
0.9 km/day in 2007.

Cycling = fewer sick days

This increase in the region’s cycled kilometres is good,
because cycling has a major documented effect on
public health.

One million fewer paid sick days: this is the benefit of
Capital Region inhabitants being such diligent cyclists.

Each time someone cycles 1,200 km, he or she reduc-
es the average number of paid sick days by one. And
it is possible for the rate of cycling to increase even
more. The Capital Region is busy establishing 28 cycle
superhighways and supporting regional cycling routes.
When these projects are finished, the calculations
show that an additional 34,000 paid sick days will be
saved each year.

2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012

4 km

3 km

2 km

1 km









2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012

Kbh + Frb



Cph + Frb



1,200 km = one less paid sick day

1 million fewer
paid sick days
due to cycling

Km per person/day

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Cycling saves money

Cycling saves the municipalities of the Capital Region of Denmark roughly
DKK 1.5 billion a year. What’s more, cycling generates an additional DKK
1.5 billion in tax revenues for the state and municipalities.

DKK 1.5 billion:
This is how much the Capital Region
saves every year from cycling in the region

Cycling reduces traffic congestion
Less congestion

What is the significance of cycling in terms of traffic flow and congestion in
the Capital Region of Copenhagen? Enormous. Inhabitants’ cycling means
that we make 112,000 fewer trips by car on a daily basis during rush hour.
In other words, 660,000 fewer kilometres are driven by car during rush hour.

If we didn’t cycle

How would we get around without the bicycle? Most of the shortest trips
of less than 2 kilometres would be replaced by walking. But some of these
trips would also be replaced by using the car or public transport.

For slightly longer trips, we would primarily replace the bicycle with a car or
public transport. And this would increase the congestion.

If we didn’t cycle in the Capital Region of Denmark, the car would be used for
almost 7,000 additional trips of less than 2 km and 41,000 additional trips be-
tween 2 and 5 km – each day. 43,000 additional trips would be between 5 and
10 km while the remaining 21,000 additional trips would be longer than 10 km.

Socio-economic benefits

Your fellow citizens also benefit from the fact that you cycle. When you take
the bicycle instead of the car, your fellow citizens reach their destination
a little sooner. The socio-economic value of the time saved by your fellow
citizens was DKK 0.8 billion in 2012.

Breakdown of cyclists using other modes
of transport, total number of trips per AADT
(annualised average daily traffic).

Public transport Walking Car

of all commuter trips in the Capital Region
were made by bicycle in 2012

Congestion saved = DKK 0.8 billion

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Cycling helps the climate
Car, bus, train, walking or bicycle? Your choice of transportation has an effect
on your surroundings – locally and globally. When people choose the bicycle
instead of other modes of transport, it is good for the climate and air quality.
Buses, trains and cars in the Capital Region of Denmark emitted 2.2 million
tonnes of CO2 in 2012.

Cycling reduces carbon emissions by 110,000 tonnes per year. If the residents
of the Capital Region did not cycle, an additional 96,000 tonnes of CO2 would
be emitted from cars, 6,000 tonnes from trains and 8,000 tonnes from buses.
Cycling also helps to reduce emissions of harmful particles and nitrogen

When we cycle more

The more we choose the bicycle over a car or public transport, the more we
reduce carbon emissions and thus benefit the climate.

In 2007, cycling was responsible for 5.5% of the kilometres travelled by res-
idents of the Capital Region of Denmark. This figure rose to 6.8% in 2012, a
24% increase. And this benefits the climate!

Increasing the bicycle’s market share from 6.8% to 7.8% would save an ad-
ditional 16,000 tonnes of carbon emissions a year. If we reach 10% of the
kilometres we travel, we will save more than 50,000 additional tonnes of
carbon emissions a year.

Saved by cycling (110,000 tonnes)

Other modes of transport
(2,169,000 tonnes)

Carbon emission reduction resulting from cycling in
the Capital Region of Denmark

Tonnes of carbon emissions/year
saved by cycling


Cycling’s share of all kilometres travelled in the Capital Region, 2007–2012



2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012











Multimodal trips Bicycle

Each time we increase our cycling by
1 percentage point, we reduce carbon
emissions by 16,000 tonnes

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2012 Statistics
2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012

Cycling’s percentage of all trips, by geographical location

- Capital Region 20.3% 22.1% 22.1% 20.9% 21.7% 21.6%

- Copenhagen and Frederiksberg 29.0% 31.0% 30.6% 30.3% 31.9% 31.6%

- Suburbs 17.5% 19.2% 18.6% 17.0% 17.9% 19.2%

- Other 12.3% 14.6% 14.6% 12.8% 12.5% 10.0%

Cycling’s percentage of all trips, by trip length

- Less than 2 km 29.0% 32.6% 29.3% 27.3% 28.3% 29.4%

- 2–5 km 31.3% 32.0% 33.6% 29.9% 33.6% 31.4%

- 5–10 km 17.8% 20.2% 19.3% 22.4% 21.4% 21.4%

- 10–25 km 04.7% 05.1% 05.7% 06.1% 04.7% 07.6%

- More than 25 km 00.7% 00.4% 02.0% 00.8% 00.5% 00.9%

Cycling’s percentage of all km travelled, by geographical location

- Capital Region 05.7% 06.4% 07.6% 07.2% 06.6% 07.3%

- Copenhagen and Frederiksberg 10.0% 10.4% 12.2% 13.0% 11.3% 13.5%

- Suburbs 05.9% 05.5% 06.7% 06.1% 06.1% 06.7%

- Other 02.1% 03.4% 03.8% 02.9% 02.4% 02.6%

Cycled km per year, by geographical location (mill. km)

- Capital Region 1,016 1,096 1,271 1,149 1,162 1,269

- Copenhagen and Frederiksberg 1.520 1. 576 1. 680 1. 661 1. 655 1. 707

- Suburbs 1. 368 1. 331 1. 386 1. 328 1. 371 1. 397

- Other 1. 129 1. 188 1. 205 1. 160 1. 136 1. 165

Average length of cycling trips

- Cycling trips only 1,63.0 1,63.0 1,63.2 1,63.3 1,63.1 1,63.3

- Multimodal transport 1,61.9 1,61.9 1,61.9 1,61.8 1,61.9 1,61.7

2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012

Cycled km per day, by age group

- All (10–84 yrs) 1,62.0 1,62.1 1,62.4 1,62.2 1,62.2 1,62.3

- Youths (10–17 yrs) 1,62.2 1,62.1 1,62.6 1,61.8 1,61.8 1,61.4

- Other (18–65 yrs) 1,62.1 1,62.3 1,62.7 1,62.5 1,62.5 1,62.8

- Elderly (66–84 yrs) 1,60.9 1,61.2 1,60.9 1,60.8 1,60.8 1,60.7

Percentage who cycle every time or with greatest frequency in different situations

- To and from work or place of education 57%

- Shopping 43%

- To recreational activities 51%

- Conveying children 27%

- Going out, e.g. restaurant, theatre, etc. 34%

Percentage who feel that it is important or very important that where they cycle:

- there are bicycle lanes on the route 83%

- there are good bicycle lanes 86%

- there are good bicycle parking options 65%

- that it is easy to combine cycling with public transport 46%

Percentage who agree or completely agree that where they cycle:

- there are bicycle lanes on the route 74%

- there are good bicycle lanes 58%

- there are good bicycle parking options 55%

- that it is easy to combine cycling with public transport 57%

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Capital Region of
– a strong cycling region

More cyclists needed

In the Capital Region of Denmark, we give high priority to cycling and want
to have even more residents choose the bicycle as their preferred mode of
transport for getting to and from work and recreational activities. We wish
to develop good cycling conditions and an innovative cycling culture in the
Capital Region because this will help to create a green, innovative metropolis
with high growth and high quality of life.

Why should we cycle?

We consider cycling to be a win-win cause. The health benefits are particularly
great. At the same time, we reap other benefits, such as cleaner air, fewer
cars, lower carbon emissions and less noise. The money we spend on cycling
is repaid many times over in the form of better public health and higher quality
of life.

DKK 40 million for cycling projects

Since 2009, the Capital Region has allocated more than DKK 40 million to
regional cycling projects which promote collaboration, development and
innovation in the area of cycling in the Capital Region. Most projects aim to
promote bicycle commuting and multimodal trips combining bicycle with
bus/train. In addition we lend a large number of electrical bicycles to our
employees to motivate them to cycle instead of driving a car to and from

Bicycle commuting

Cycle superhighways

Regional cycling fund

Test-ride an electrical bicycle

Multimodal trips

Bicycles free on local railways

Bicycle flexi-room on local railways

Bringing bicycles on buses

Cycling traffic in the Frederikssund corridor

Innovative cycling

CykelPlanen (app)

Recreational cycling
and tourism

Øresund as a cycling region

Friluftsguide (app)

Examples of regional cycling development projects

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The municipalities prioritise cycling

To illustrate municipal efforts to promote cycling, the Capital Region of Denmark
has conducted a questionnaire survey in our municipalities. We found out that
more than three-quarters of the municipalities focus on cycling. The focus
areas vary from school routes for children, to commuters, tourists and green
traffic. Many of the municipalities already have a cycling strategy or cycling
policy in place, or are in the process of drafting one. Or they have articulated
their cycling plans in another way. In addition, half of the municipalities have
one or more written objectives for cycling.

Cycle superhighways – a common flagship

A joint project involving the Capital Region, the municipalities and the state
is the cycle superhighways project. The aim of the project is to develop a
contiguous network of high-quality bicycle commuter routes across municipal

This effort could potentially increase bicycle commuting in the region by
more than 30%, compared to today. The total benefit of implementing the
entire network of cycle superhighways is calculated at DKK 7.3 billion. By
themselves, the 28 cycle superhighways under way in the region could
reduce sick leave by 34,000 days a year.

The map shows a plan for the network of cycle super-
highways across most municipalities in the Capital
Region. The routes have either been planned, adopted
or constructed and are jointly funded by the munici-
palities and the state.

Capital Region of Denmark
Centre for Regional Development
Kongens Vænge 2
DK-3400 Hillerød

+45 3866 5000

Graphic design: RegionH Design
Photos: Colourbox, Ty Stange,
Nicolai Perjesi

Capital Region of Denmark REGIONAL CYCLING REPORT Capital Region of Denmark ...