It’s a long time since the latest issue of the popular “Copenhagenize” ranking about bicycle friendly cities was out. Suddenly, we have 2 new rankings published. The first one was completed by Money.co.uk in August 2021, trying to figure out the bicycle friendliness of cities for tourists. Another one, Cyclorank, completed in November 2021 by Martin Lumiste, a bike enthusiast and data scientist, tries to measure the bicycle infrastructure availability for everyday commuter. Both rankings are interesting and worth looking into.
The Money.co.uk Cycle Cities ranking introduces metrics with tourists in mind, who consider using a bike in their destination, like
- cost of bike hire (including e-bike),
- safety measured as number of bicycle fatalities per population,
- regulations on safety,
- length of bicycle roads per capita
- bicycle repair shops!!! per capita.
It’s a very interesting dataset, suggested by “consumer spending experts”. We cannot recall anyone else using similar kind of dataset before. The results include some usual suspects like Copenhagen and Amsterdam at the very top. But to find some underdogs like Tallinn, squeezed into the 2nd place before Amsterdam, as well as Vilnius in 8th position, was quite a surprise.
Money.co.uk ranking (2021) Total Score /280
|1. Copenhagen, Denmark||216|
|2. Tallinn, Estonia||210|
|3. Amsterdam, Holland||209|
|4. Helsinki, Findland||201|
|5. Oslo, Norway||185|
|6. Valencia, Spain||173|
|8. Vilnius, Lithuania||171|
|9. The Hague, Holland||168|
|10. Geneva, Switzerland||165|
The original list also includes cities from other continents: Tel Aviv, Israel with score 192 on the 5th position, positions 7-9 are taken by Australian cities: Adelaide, 185, Perth, 183 and Canberra, 177.
Cyclorank by Martin Lumiste measures the bicycle road share in total city road infrastructure as a key component in bicycle-friendliness of the city. What we like:
- considers cycle-friendly bicycle infrastructure only, based on OpenStreetMaps
- lower weights to bicycle roads/lanes in the outskirts of the city
- standardized methology
Additional metrics include parking lots for bicycle, option for segregated bicycle paths.
To consider in the future updates, Cyclorank we’d propose to:
- add weights to give higher value to uninterrupted cycle paths and lower value to disconnected paths,
- add charging points for e-bikes
- make a comparison of relative safety of bicycle commute given by commuters.
Cyclorank (2021) Share of cycle infrastructure as % of total
|1. Malmo, Sweden||16.2%|
|2. Copenhagen, Denmark||13.6%|
|3. Valencia, Spain||13.4%|
|4. Helsinki, Findland||13.4%|
|5. Antwerp, Belgium||13.3%|
|6. Hanover, Germany||13.0%|
|7. Rotterdam, Holland||12.5%|
|8. Utrecht, Holland||12.5%|
|9. Stockholm, Sweden||12.4%|
|10. Gothenburg, Sweden||12.4%|
Copenhagen is pushed to position #2 by Malmö, that has not shown in many rankings so far. Malmö steals away the 1st position with significant edge, having 16.2% of the entire navigable road network explicitly for bikes. Helsinki, with a relatively stretched out city area, loses its 2nd position after relative weights are applied that prefer bicycle roads closer to the city centre.
You can read more about both rankings here:
1) Money.co.uk: https://www.money.co.uk/credit-cards/cycle-cities (2021)
2) Cyclorank by M.Lumiste: https://bit.ly/3cav7EN (2021)
Here is the Copenhagenize index from 2019
- Copenhagen, Denmark
- Amsterdam, Holland
- Utrecht, Holland
- Antwerp, Belgium
- Strasbourg, France
- Bordeaux, France
- Oslo, Norway
- Paris, France
- Vienna, Austria
- Helsinki, Finland
Please give your opinion, about what do you think of these rankings, do you agree, or rather not?