Amsterdam is looking for a new bicycle mayor and Camila Pinzon has been nominated for this. So vote for her! In the week of October 30, you can vote in the Cyclespace Pavilion and on Thursday November 2 in Circl. The website of Cyclespace contains all the information about the process.
Who is Camila Pinzon?
I am a cycling Amsterdam mother who does everything by bike and loves Amsterdam for that reason. I was born in Colombia where I learned to bike from my parents like most of the children. In Colombia I studied architecture and then was one of the few to bike to the university. From that moment on, I know that bicycles are the best means of transport in the city. I am urbanist and find the bike the best means, by its simplicity, to make cities more human and vibrant.
Why do you want to become Amsterdam’s Bicycle Mayor?
I want to become a bicycle master because I find Amsterdam the most beautiful and fun city to live and the the bicycle has a big share in it. I want to help to maintain and improve this by deploying me two years for my three focus points. I also want people to enjoy cycling in other countries. In recent times, I have held conferences, webinars and workshops in various Latin American and European cities about how cycling works in the Netherlands and what can be learnt from our experiences. I hope to welcome a lot of visitors as a mayor in Amsterdam to inspire them to encourage cycling in their cities as well.
What are your three pocus points?
1. Safety for cyclists: Scooters off the cycle path.
Scooters are the biggest annoyance of all cycling Amsterdammers. Many organizations have been working for years to make the cycle paths free of scooters. I want to support this fight by starting a campaign in which anyone can share videos and photos of dangerous situations that we all face daily on the streets. If we all share massive experiences and shout for attention, then The Hague and the new cabinet will have to take action to quickly get the scooters off the cycle path.
2. Bike kids and youth safely in the Amsterdam hustle and bustle.
Cycle paths are getting busier and parents worry about the safety of their cycling children. I want children to cycle safe through the city, because if children can ride a bike safely, it also applies to the elderly and actually to everyone. The municipality’s multi-year bike plan has good plans that also mean a lot of safety, such as a bicycle ring and the green routes that enter the city. Unfortunately, the plant is for a longer period and I want to see results within two years. So I propose to take temporary actions that will improve safety in the meantime. A renewed Amsterdam cycling activism 10.0 (because Amsterdammers have been actively fighting for a better cycling climate in the city for decades), with Amsterdammers painting the streets. With paint, we can temporarily adapt important cycling routes to schools and dangerous crossings. This improves the safety of youth cycling to school. By acting, we create awareness among the Amsterdammers that it is better and that cyclists deserve more space for safe cycling.
3. People who do not hike bikes now to go on a bike, for example, certain migrant groups where bicycles do not have a good image.
With too many Amsterdamers, cycling is not so popular. Here I want to do something, so that more and more Amsterdammers get the bicycle for their daily transport. I propose three different actions:
– In some youth groups, the image of cycling is bad, it is seen as a vehicle for lossers. I propose to start a social media campaign in which local heroes, like a famous hip-hop singer or soccer player, share their experiences with the bicycle and give a cycling a cool image . – There is a second group of people who do not bike because they have not learned or do not have a bike. There are already great organizations in Amsterdam who, for example, teach migrants to cycle or make bicycles available to asylum seekers. As a bicycle mayor, I want to talk with these organizations to learn from their experiences and to support them by scaling up their initiatives in other neighbourhoods and other groups . This allows cycling for everyone. The last action, perhaps the least popular but very effective, is to increase the parking rates in cities where less cycling is now being made. Cycling becomes financially more attractive.
My three focus points can only be realized by working together with all the parties who do so much for the bicycle in Amsterdam and with all the Amsterdamers. I want to be the bridge between the organizations to work together over the next two years.
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Camila Pinzon is one of the three Bicycle Master Amsterdam finalists. Together with Nick Dekker and Katelijne Boerma, they will pitch their points Thursday 2 November at the election evening in Circl on the Zuidas (Gustav Mahlerplein 1B).
Voting can only be physical: this can be on the election evening itself, this begins at 20:00. You can also vote on the days before (Mon, Tues, Wed) between 10:00 and 16:00 you at the CycleSpace pavilion on the Zuidas or on Thursday November 2 between 12:00 to 13:00 on the Dam! Note: You must identify yourself when voting.
Do you want to attend the election evening? Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, before Wednesday 1 November 18.00!