Ghent Honoured Internationally With Carsharing Award 2020

Ghent Honoured Internationally With Carsharing Award 2020

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The SHARE-North cities of Ghent, Bergen and Bremen were three of ten nominees in two categories for the 2020 Carsharing Award. The awards are a worldwide competition that acknowledge and reward the leading cities for introducing, maintaining, supporting, and recognising the value of a viable carsharing eco-system in their city. The Belgian city of Ghent was awarded with the honour for cities in the regional category with fewer than 750,000 inhabitants on May 28th, 2020.

The award was accepted by Ghent’s Deputy Mayor Filip Watteeuw, who has been a strong supporter of initiatives that reduce car-dependency and car-ownership in the city and a strong proponent of carsharing who not only “talks the talk” but also “walks the walk”. During the Award Ceremony and his acceptance speech, Filip Watteeuw presented Ghent’s innovative parking policies, its Mobility Circulation Plan and revised Carsharing Action Plan to have 25,000 carsharing users in the City by 2025. The City has seen a significant growth in carsharing use over the last few years and can be attributed in part to successful regular communication campaigns carried out by SHARE-North partner, which is supported by the City of Ghent with an annual budget of 50,000 €. On a personal note, Filip Watteeuw shared that he enjoys not needing to own, both in his function as deputy mayor as well as in his private life and that he uses carsharing, cycling and cargo bikes to meet his mobility needs. Filip Watteeuw also acknowledge the inspiration Ghent received for its carsharing policies from the City of Bremen as well as the value of transnational cooperation within the SHARE-North project.

I congratulate the City of Ghent, which whom we have a close exchange on the topics of carsharing and transport policy, and am pleased about the recognition of Bremen’s mobility project [that this nomination has provided]. Carsharing is part of the transport policy DNA in Bremen and Ghent and is an important building block of a liveable and climate friendly city,” said Dr. Maike Schaefer, Bremen’s Minister for Climate Protection, the Environment, Mobility, Urban and Housing Development.

In a social media post, Taxistop’s Angelo Meuleman shared: “I’m not only living in a very beautiful city, but also in the ‘2020 Car-Share City Award – Nr. 1 Regional City”. Last night, the prize was awarded by the Carsharing Association! Oh yes, I’m proud! Why Ghent? Credits to the Stad Gent and Alderman Filip Watteeuw: They understand the role of carsharing as a complementary mode to walking, cycling and public transport. Ghent has a very strong carsharing action plan that supports the operators and the users: “20.000 Car-Sharers in 2020”, the plan was inspired by the Stadt Bremen Michael Glotz-Richter and Rebecca Karbaumer. Ghent is also a very entrepreneurial environment. With 260.000 inhabitants, we are a cozy town, but we have many home-grown operators: cambio Autodelen Vlaanderen, BattMobility NV, Partago, Degage, and Cozycar. And last but not least: We have the spirit and passion of the NGO’s Taxistop and particularly with Jeffrey Matthijs. In Ghent, we have carsharing DNA, but we are inspired and got a lot of support from SHARE-North partners Advier, CoMoUK and Bergen kommune. The carshare award is a result of transnational transfer of expertise, ambition and vibes #SharedMobilityRocks”.

The 2020 Carsharing City Awards is a collaboration between the CSA Carsharing Association and “movmi”, a Vancouver based agency specialising in Shared Mobility Design. 27 international cities were nominated and based on criteria the awards have been chosen by a panel of industry experts.

The finalists in the Metropolitan category (over 750K inhabitants) are: Vancouver, Munich, Milan, Calgary, and Madrid/Paris. In the regional category (under 750K inhabitants), the finalists were: Bergen, Ghent, Lisbon, Bremen, and Ljubljana.

The ceremony to announce the winners for this inaugural event took place through video conference, on May 28th, at 17:00 Eastern and was attended by participants from around the world. Each winner was interviewed (a virtual fireside chat) along with a Q and A as part of the 1.5-hour event. A public report listing the top five policies cities can implement to encourage carsharing was also be presented and features lessons learned from each of the nominated cities. The full report “Five Foundational Carsharing Policies for Every City” is available here.

29 May 2020