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Sixth Congress of Active Mobility
10 April 2015
Amber Expo
traditionally in Gdansk

The organizer of the Congress:


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5th Congress of Active Mobility is approaching …

The city of Gdańsk and the Polish Union of Active Mobility (PUMA) extend their invitation to take part in the 5th edition of the Congress which looks for solutions and promotes the achievements of local self-governments increasing the share of active forms of mobility in daily life of their residents. Last year it assembled over 350 participants from Poland and abroad. We are convinced that this year we will be able to repeat this success. Please feel invited to the Amber-Expo convention and exhibition centre between 11th and 13th September 2014.

Fig. PUMA 1 - Maciej Lisicki - Deputy Mayor of Gdańsk, President of the Polish Union of Active Mobility.

The intent of the congress organisers and creators of its programme is to make it a platform of presentation of experience and propositions of innovative ways of coping with the challenges of daily mobility and shaping the strategies of development and spatial arrangement of contemporary cities and regions.

It is organised in Pomerania, a region which is on one hand strongly determined to support the process of improvement of conditions of active mobility linked with the public transport network, on the other hand it records an increasing support of such initiatives expressed by local communities. Pomerania becomes increasingly walking and cycling friendly, and to an increasing extent a region of vibrant energy, where active mobility modes are safe and attractive, becoming more and more often the preferred options of daily commuting. It is reflected not only in strategic documents, but also in daily practice of hundreds – thousands of cyclists registered by the induction loops installed near key transport hubs of the city of Gdansk.

Our Congresses give the opportunity of getting acquainted with the knowledge of speakers coming from many countries and cities of the world: those which already enjoy a high quality of life resulting from high share of cycling in the modal split and invest further in activities, intended to increase them, but also those, which are at the beginning of the route leading to sustainable development and advanced quality of life.

Fig. PUMA 2 - Plenary Session (the first day)

The symptoms of radical social and technological changes which we have witnessed during the past 25 years have been amply reflected in the evolution of topics of subsequent Congresses. Considerations about the necessary reshaping of engineering and legal solutions, which used to be subject of greatest interest of beginner cycling cities, have gradually given way to discussions about the ways of shaping behavioural patterns, the object of interest of humanistic and behavioural sciences.

At the first Congress of 2010 Mr. Manfred Neun, the President of the European Cyclists’ Federation, who has since June this year become the chairman of the Steering Committee of the World Cycling Alliance (WCA) formulated the need to change the perspective: instead of looking for the answer to the question: what can the city do for the cyclists? we should focus our attention on looking for the answer to the question: what can the cyclists do for the city?

Fig. PUMA 3 - Klaus Bondam former Deputy Mayor of Copenhagen,
Director of the Danish Cultural Institute in Brussels.

They can, among others, organise a Congress  – a Congress looking for ways of coping with the challenges of modern urban areas, not limiting to the proposition of implementation of a series of engineering activities to improve cycling conditions of the group of people, who can already cope with the urban traffic.

The Congress planned for this year is going to be fully inscribed in this process – among important elements of its programme we will find the issues concerning the use of e-mobility solutions, among which a prominent place is occupied by pedelecs, propelled with human power supported with energy accumulated in batteries. E-mobility, however, does not concern exclusively the pedelecs, e-cars or e-scooters only – it is also a catalyst of the process of improving the efficiency of use of individual vehicles within the framework of e-car sharing or car pooling schemes.

Fig. PUMA 4 - Jean François Retièreçois Retier
Vice President of the metropolitan region of Nantes.

Spatial planning of our cities, which could lead to the development of cities of short distances  in polycentric agglomerations connected at the local, regional and national level with efficient public communication systems will also be an important element of the congress programme.

Fig. PUMA 5 - Debate journalists (from left: Christopher Martyniak, Lydia Flint-Zimand,
Agata Kowalska, Lech Parella and Rafal Glazik)

The ability to develop partner relationships with important structures of public life – including those operating at an international level is a symptom of maturity of modern business and non-governmental organisations. This year the Congress programme is organically connected with the activities undertaken last year by the Embassy of the Republic of France in Poland within the framework of the Eko-miasto competition.  Our Congress will be an important stage of continuation of that initiative – participation in it constitutes one of conditions of the entire process of selection of innovative self-governments striving to gain the opportunity to take part in study tours to leading cities implementing the policy of development of active forms of mobility in France.

Fig. PUMA 6 - Signing of a cooperation agreement between PSR and PUMA
(from left: Maciej Rusek, John Rule, Maciej Lisicki and Zenon Drewa)

Like any event of this type, the Congress will be a platform of transferring knowledge and experience by the invited speakers, but it will also be a platform of sharing knowledge and creation of a network of connections among the participants. The problems of mobility are often manifested in a similar way – it is reasonable to share good practices implemented at home and to cooperate within the framework of lasting institutional forms, offered to local and regional governments by the PUMA – Polish Union of Active Mobility.

Please feel invited to take part in the debate about the role of active mobility in our cities and encouraged to implement actions, which lead to change them into attractive, life – friendly centres of employment, learning, entertainment and rest.

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