PING if you care !

Nice to meet you! My name is PING!
I give cyclists the opportunity to communicate and engage directly with the city-administration in order to make cycling more comfortable and safer.

Hello, how are you today?
Exploring a city by bike is quick, cheap and healthy. And, most of all, it is fun!
Your city wants to be more cycling friendly, with a cycle network that is expanding all the time, with marked and signed bike routes, with new facilities and implementing, among other things, priority zones for cyclists at traffic lights? That’s great indeed! But who is actually deciding on what is the best for cyclists? Are they involved in this decision finding?

I have good news for you!
I offer a direct and transparent way to foster the communication between citizens and city officials. Through a unique campaign, I offer a platform to actively engage in the improvement of the city.
But, before I continue, may I introduce myself? My name is PING. PING if you care! As soon as a cyclist has received me, they can download the Bike Citizens app for free and pair it with me. When starting the cycling route, the app is activated and ready to start collecting PINGs. Every time a user wishes to share a cycling-experience, may it be
a positive impression, such as a route or place with high quality, or helping to improve infrastructure, they simply click me to mark that exact point on a map that is provided by the Bike Citizens app. And after completion of the trip, participants have the possibility to provide additional feedback via this app. They can do this immediately, after finishing the route or at any later stage.

In the next step, each marked spot can be edited by matching it with different categories. The marked locations and feedback are reviewed and set into correlation with overall cycling data of the
city. In this way, it allows to point out issues right away, and it allows for easier communication between the citizens and the city administration. And don’t be afraid, all the data is safe! For statistical purposes, only anonymised data will be used when analysing the tracking and PING data.

Changing cycling policy at the push of a button
My friends are working with an analytics tool that has so many features, you can’t image. Combining the PINGs with overall cycling data of your city. Compare the speed of a cyclists with
the marked PINGs. Identifying underlying and objective causes for the subjective sense of insecurity. Analysing how sociodemographic variables and bicycle-related person variables
are related to PING behaviour. Do women, for example, PING other issues than men? Do experienced cyclists PING different than less experienced cyclists? What about the e-bikers? What is
their sense of insecurity? Are they PINGing more? Or different? Why, and for what reasons, are some routes less used? Are they unsafe, uncomfortable, or simply not the shortest way?
The eventual goal of this project is not to immediately fix, for example, potholes, but to combine all the issues that cyclists face, in order to create a bigger picture. At the end of the campaign,
Mobiel 21 and Bike Citizens analyse all the data received and offer short, medium and long-term recommendations to the city officials to improve the cycling environment. Hence, it also helps to invest public money wisely!

Who, Where, When?
So many questions? Good! Let me answer them one after the other. Who should be involved? Cyclists. Because they are going to  communicate and engage directly with the city government in order to make cycling more comfortable and safer. The city itself, because all the analysis and recommendations will be provided to support the
city to enhance its cycling policy on a long-term, respectively, on how the city can organise their resources in a more efficient way. Local organisations are encouraged to become a partner, because they can help to run the campaign in the local language on-site (and because they know the routes in the city really well). In order to keep the motivation and involvement high during the complete
campaign, a media mix is used to trigger attention and to create a feeling of ownership. Therefore, also the media is an important part of the campaign. And, of course, Mobiel 21 as project coordinator, campaign designer and main research partner, and Bike Citizens as app technology provider.

Where the campaign should take place? The campaign can take place throughout the whole city or in one or more respective districts. When the campaign should take place? Ideally, the campaign  takes place during a period where most of the people are cycling. This means, from March to October. Or, for hardcore cyclists, even the whole year through! But we have to take into consideration, that preparing the campaign takes up to three months, because I am produced only on demand.

The best things in life are (not always) free
Such as smiles, hugs, family, friends, sleep, laughter, good memories and love. But my friends can’t live on love alone, and therefore, the campaign itself costs something. However, the costs are open for negotiations, and they depend on the size of the city, the duration of the campaign, how many cyclists should participate, and what questions should be answered. For example, if we are talking about a city of about 300,000 inhabitants, a six-months campaign, with 1,000 cyclists and the full package of analysis and recommendations, we might come up with a total amount of EUR 280,000.00. Before saying „That’s too much!“, please take into account that, on an average, one meter of highway costs around EUR 140,000.00. Which means, for 2 meters of highway I can offer an ‚All-inclusive-campaign‘ to make cycling in your city more comfortable and safer, and can help you to organise resources in a more efficient and smart way. Finally, the whole anonymised PING data-set is offered in a way that is compatible with the digital infrastructure of the city.

You want more information?
I am aware that with this short introduction I am not able to provide you with all information, so, please feel free to visit our website or to contact Mobiel 21 and Bike Citizens, who are happy to answer all questions you might have. Have a safe and comfortable bike ride!