A Sustainable KL: Kuala Lumpur Mayor And Netherland Foreign Trade Minister Leads ‘Cycling Kuala Lumpur’ In Conjunction With WUF9

9 Feb 2018 - In conjunction with the 9th World Urban Forum (WUF9), The Mayor of Kuala Lumpur – Tan Sri Mhd Amin Nordin Abdul Aziz; Raja Muda (Crown Prince) of Perlis - Tuanku Syed Faizzudin Putra Jamalullail; and Netherland’s Minister of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation – The Honourable Sigrid Kaag lead a group of dignitaries to experience the cycling lanes in Kuala Lumpur.  This is a living testament of the steps Kuala Lumpur is taking to become a more sustainable and liveable city by investing in smart mobility solutions and cycling infrastructure. 

Malaysia has reached another milestone with the recent unveiling of the New Urban Agenda aimed at leading the country towards sustainable urbanisation and development. Carrying the theme Cities 2030, Cities for All, the agenda is an urbanisation action blueprint drawn up for cities and its stakeholders in support of the 2030 agenda, built around a series of Sustainable Development Goals.

To support the urgan agenda, bicycle lanes were recently introduced in Kuala Lumpur city centre, aimed at promoting a healthier lifestyle among city folks, and for the ease to cycle from one location to another in the heart of the city safely. This inititiative will further enhance the living standards of Malaysians as well as encouraging the city towards achieving a lower carbon footprint.  These dedicated bicycles lanes are part of a sustainable development effort that aims to make Kuala Lumpur amongst world's best green cities.

Countries like Netherlands have long made cycling a common mode of transport with 36% of the people listing the bicycle as their most frequent mode of transport on a typical day. This high frequency of bicycle travel is enabled by excellent cycling infrastructure such as cycle paths, cycle tracks within the city and by making cycling routes shorter, quicker and more direct than car routes. 

“I am looking forward to cycle in Kuala Lumpur! Happy to see that the city is taking steps to invest in cycling infrastructure and in smart urban mobility solutions. The Netherlands is well known as a cycling country these days. That used to be different. For decades, the car was seen as the ultimate symbol of modernity. It is different now and our urban landscape in the Netherlands has undergone considerable changes in the last decades,” said Sigrid Kaag, Netherland’s Minister of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation.  

“Today, the Netherlands counts more bicycles than inhabitants and the bicycle is the king of the road, also in busy cities. Cyclists spend less time in traffic jams and their quality of life has increased. Bicycle infrastructure creates safer streets for adults and children. And a greener city with lower carbon emissions,” she adds.

 The bicycle routes not only provide an alternative to people who opt to cycle in the city centre, but also encourages a network of routes for bicycle tourism which reaches all corners of the city, covering unique and cultural elements. It is also an alternative to complement the public transportation system. Cycling is the way forward to develop a more sustainable city and the reduction in the use of private cars will minimise city pollution. 

“With the increasing number of Foreign Direct Investments into the city, Kuala Lumpur has to be on par in embracing the urban agenda and having the right infrastructure in place is the key for a sustainable development,” said Tan Sri Mhd Amin Nordin Abdul Aziz, The Mayor of Kuala Lumpur.

“Daily cycling is slowly increasing among Malaysians, and it will be a mode of transport that promises to play a significant role in the city's mobility management.  These are plans that would lead Kuala Lumpur to become a more sustainable urbanized city,” adds the mayor. 

The KL City Council has developed the first phase of the project that stretches for 11.9km from the DBKL headquarters in Jalan Raja Laut towards Jalan Sultan Ismail and all the way to the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre (KLCC). Cycling, healthy living, easy mode of transportation, ease of traffic congestion, low carbon emission and a good green environment are concepts which go well together. Everywhere the bicycle evokes the same images of urbanized city development and lifestyle.

Other dignitaries in this entourage that support this mission include H.E. Karin Mössenlechner, Netherlands Ambassador to Malaysia; Dato' Sri Haji Mohammad Bin Mentek, Secretary General of Ministry of Urban Wellbeing, Housing & Local Government; Datuk Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Executive Director of UN-Habitat;  Datuk Zainal Amanshah, CEO of InvestKL, just to name a few. There were more than 90 dignitaries, corporate and government representatives, friends from the Netherland Embassies and business associates on this route from MaTIC to KLCC.