Milan, one of the Italy’s cities hardest hit by the coronavirus, plans to create 35 km of cycle paths and new pedestrian areas as part of a new post-pandemic mobility plan to enable social distancing and reduce the use of cars and public transport.
Mobility Councillor, Marco Granelli, said it will be impossible for buses and trains to carry the same number of passengers, and environmentally damaging if everyone used their cars.
As such, to ensure physical distancing to avoid contagion is possible, the city council’s ‘Strade aperte’ plan will involve widening the narrowest sidewalks and creating new bicycle lanes by changing the signposting – without the need for major works.
These will be permanent changes, and while works will be carried out to moderate traffic in some places, in most instances it will only involve changing the markings on the road.
Many of these actions will begin to be carried out from May, to prepare the city for the phased reopening of industries and businesses when the worst of the health crisis has passed.
Other post-pandemic measures include imposing a maximum number of passengers on the metro, tram and bus, with one metre markers painted on stations and onboard vehicles.
In addition, 30km speed restrictions will be certain places while loading and unloading zones will be extended as deliveries are expected to rise.
In residential areas, “priority pedestrian zones” will be created where the speed limit for cars will be 15 or 20 kilometres per hour.
In Rome, the public transport company wants to limit the number of passengers on each bus to a maximum of 20, while in Naples, the use of bicycles will be encouraged.