More than 50 percent of the participants who participated in our interviews in SINFONICA so far told us they actively use bikes for their daily routes. Participating cyclists specifically allows us to gather important and interesting information from experienced bike users, including their main reasons for riding a bike – like eco-friendliness, independence from the time schedules of public transport and the health benefits – as well as the barriers to easy and safe use of bicycles and the wishes and concerns regarding the mix of bicycles and autonomous vehicles in a future mixed traffic scenario. The exchange with cyclists on this topic is particularly interesting, as they will share road space with autonomous vehicles in the future.

Hamburg is taking bold steps to transform itself into a truly bicycle-friendly city and is keen to make cycling more enjoyable and, above all, safer. To this end, various ITS projects have been launched, integrating different aspects of CCAM – which is also one of the main aspects of SINFONICA – to promote sustainable mobility and enhance the safety of cyclists and pedestrians.

One project is BATS (Baltic Sea Region – Active Mobility Solutions – in Darkness and All Weather Conditions), which focuses on ensuring year-round safety and attractiveness for cycling and walking by developing technical tools and citizen engagement strategies to evaluate different means to improve infrastructure and traffic systems.

Another project for cyclists is PrioBike-HH. Hamburg is a pioneer in the digitization of cycling in Germany in 2025. By leveraging digital technologies, PrioBike-HH aims to enhance comfort and safety for cyclists through features such as adjusted traffic signal control, visualization of speed recommendations, and real-time warnings to drivers about cyclists. One of the products of this project is the development of a smartphone app that provides a speed advisory depending on the status of the following traffic light, along with optimized bicycle traffic routing.

There is still much work ahead of us to achieve Vision 0 in cycling and make cycling more inclusive. By involving cyclists in a targeted manner, SINFONICA can provide a lot of important information on the specific obstacles and barriers to cycling in Hamburg. In this regard, SINFONICA can also highlight important aspects of functioning mixed traffic with autonomous vehicles and make recommendations for action, particularly for projects on cooperative, connected and automated mobility. The participation formats used so far have made it clear that most cyclists are open to autonomous vehicles and curious about them but believe that a well-planned, sufficiently tested and safe introduction of the vehicles into road traffic is necessary to ensure safe traffic for cyclists in mixed areas.

The different projects in Hamburg in collaboration with SINFONICA will make it easier to understand the needs and concerns of this specific target group, create more safety and make informed decisions for the benefit of cyclists in Hamburg.

Author: Maren Link

cover picture: PrioBike HH – speed advisory for cyclists © LSBG Hamburg