If you like bikes and bike-friendly cities and want to help the people of Ukraine — then I just started a crowdfunding project for you. .

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Help give the people of Lviv their cycling freedom. When you know why,

When the City of Lviv asked me to help them with a bicycle planning project, it was a no-brainer.

‘Of course! Count me in!’ I responded immediately.

But is wartime the best time for an urban mobility strategy? Well, as the biggest city in Western Europe, Lviv was already a busy place. But because Putin has spared it from heavy bombing, it recently began to attract internally displaced refugees.

200,000 in fact. Put another way, a 28% increase in population in a matter of days.

And because so many of these unfortunate people arrived by car, the roads became gridlocked. Public transport couldn’t cope. So, how does everyone get to the supermarket, to the doctor, to school?

That’s where bikes and bike lanes come in — and I have answered briefs like this all over the world, so I know the amazing impact they can have.

The problem here is that Lviv doesn’t have enough bikes and the city isn’t bike friendly like Copenhagen. Which is, in a way, the solution.

Not only do we have more bikes than people in Copenhagen, we scrap 400,000 every year in Denmark. It’s madness.

On top of this, there are hundreds of maybe even thousands of spare or unwanted bikes cluttering up sheds and garages all over town.

Decent, working Danish workhorse bikes. Not Tour de France racers or e-bikes.

So, why not donate these to the people of Lviv who are crying out for them?

This would be an enormous box ticked, but it’s not enough. Cycling needs to be safe. So we need safe bike lanes in Lviv. But there’s no time or money to build ones like we have in Denmark.

No worries. We have an excellent, tried and tested pop-up solution. However, it’s not a cheap option. Which is why we need your financial support.

How are we going to do all this?

Planning. Logistics. Midnight oil burned by me and my amazing volunteers. Trucks. People who check bikes. Brave colleagues on the ground. Coffee.

The big idea is 2,000 decent bikes — as many as possible with locks and seats for kids — and 20 km of pop-up bike lanes, ready to plug and play.

We reckon that’s ten container loads.

Is it all crazy? I don’t know. I only know that we can do this if we do it together. So please join us and donate whatever you can. Wherever you are reading this.

Thank you on behalf of the volunteers and the people of Lviv.

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Mikael Colville-Andersen

Mikael Colville-Andersen

Urban designer, author and host of the global documentary series about urbanism, The Life-Sized City. Impatient Idealist.