SOLUTIONSplus walked the talk at the Walk21 Conference!

SOLUTIONSplus, the project kick-starting the transition towards low-carbon urban mobility, left its mark at the Walk21 Conference in Kigali last October. Wonder how? Then keep on reading!

SOLUTIONSplus brings together highly committed cities, industry, research, implementing organisations, and finance partners to establish a global platform for shared, public, and commercial e-mobility solutions. To advance its efforts, the project made its appearance in Kigali from 16 to 19 October 2023. The reason? The Walk21 Conference!

The Walk21 Conference, a global annual event advocating for walkable communities, celebrated its first-ever African edition in Kigali this year. Hosted by the University of Rwanda, in collaboration with the City of Kigali and UNEP, the conference focuses on fostering livable cities by emphasizing pedestrian-friendly urban planning. Each year, the conference transforms a different city worldwide into a hub for this cause, and Kigali proudly took the spotlight as the first African host.

Ensuring pedestrian safety in an e-mobility era

On 16 October, SOLUTIONSPlus and TRANS-SAFE hosted the workshop ''Ensuring pedestrian safety in an e-mobility era', sparking vibrant discussions on e-mobility and pedestrian safety. Fueled by African demonstrations in Kigali and Dar es Salaam, the event used a policy brief as a launchpad, encouraging attendees from cities worldwide to explore fine-tuning e-mobility for enhanced pedestrian safety.

Participants from diverse cities worldwide, including Porto Alegre (BR), Pune (IN), Quekimane (MZ), Kigali (RW), Nairobi (KE), Bonn, Berlin (DE), Addis Ababa (ET), and more, brought a rich tapestry of perspectives to the workshop. This variety proved instrumental in shaping discussions and outcomes, offering valuable insights into the realities of pedestrian safety amid the global surge in mobility electrification. Conversations revolved around enhancing pedestrian safety in the wake of new mobility trends, exploring hopes and concerns regarding pedestrians and e-mobility sharing urban spaces, and identifying actionable steps!

Unlocking e-bicycles' potential

On 19 October, the vibrant "Unlocking e-bicycles' potential" side event unfolded, a collaborative effort by POLIS and UEMI. This dynamic gathering not only showcased the impressive strides made by the City of Kigali in the realm of e-bicycles but also served as a rallying point for diverse stakeholders during the Walk21 Conference 2023. Attendees, including forward-thinking representatives from the City of Kigali and innovative start-ups supported by SOLUTIONSPlus, delved into lively discussions on the myriad advantages of e-bicycles, from combating air pollution to fostering sustainable last-mile delivery.

The event went beyond the global perspective, honing in on the unique benefits and challenges of e-bicycles in the African context. City representatives eagerly engaged in conversations, not only learning about partner projects and local innovations but also actively exploring avenues to bolster the increased presence of e-bicycles in African cities. This unique gathering wasn't just about technology; it was an opportunity for dynamic exchanges, reflections on maximizing benefits, and envisioning a future where e-bicycles play a pivotal role in shaping sustainable urban landscapes across diverse global contexts.