#VC21   #CycleDiversity   #Velocity2021


In September 2021, Lisbon hosted the annual cycling conference, Velo-city 2021 Lisboa, jointly organized by Lisbon Municipality, the European Cyclists' Federation (ECF) and the Empresa Municipal de Mobilidade e Estacionamento de Lisboa (EMEL).

This unmissable event is widely considered as the premier worldwide annual cycling summit, serving as a global knowledge exchange platform and targeted at influencing decision makers in favour of more active and sustainable mobility, better cycling infrastructure and increased daily bicycle use.

ECF President

There has never been a better time for cycling. During the COVID pandemic has shown that in times of crisis, cycling is part of the solution. Cycling is a healthy, safe, reliable and fast mode of transport, that has helped keep our societies running during the past 18 months. Everywhere in Europe we see a strong increase in trips by bicycle and bicycle sales reach record highs.  Cycling will equally be a crucial part of the solution if we want to reach our goals to combat the climate emergency and  to achieve a sustainable transport system. The time is now. Citizens and decision makers are ready to change the way we move and live.


Lisbon is one of the forward-thinking cities that leads the way. Lisbon recognised the essential role of cycling for the resilience of our communities and grasped the opportunity to reshape its streets. Velo-city 2021 Lisboa will be a great place to learn and exchange knowledge on the key role the bicycle plays in building a more liveable world. I look forward to welcoming you there in person!


Henk Swarttouw
ECF President


ECF President

Mayor of Lisbon

Diversity, inclusion, tolerance, and multiculturalism are part of Lisbon's DNA. Velo-city 2021’s theme could not be, therefore, more adjusted to our ideal of the city. This event is an opportunity for Lisbon. An opportunity to show that we are on the right path, that we are working to transform Lisbon into a fairer, more sustainable and balanced city, where bicycles are definitely part of the options available to everyone and are also part of the mobility solution.


We are living in times of change, of transformation. We are living a new normal, the result of a pandemic that has forced us to rethink the way society is organised, how we live, how we move. In every crisis there are opportunities, and this is our opportunity for change. If we want to leave a positive legacy for future generations, this is the time for a change.


Welcome to Velo-city 2021. Welcome to Lisboa.


Fernando Medina
Mayor of Lisbon (Portugal)

Mayor of Lisbon

EMEL President

EMEL has been working, together with Lisbon Municipality, so that Lisbon, a city open to the world, increasingly asserts itself in the change of mobility paradigm, to a model that offers greater security and is more environmentally sustainable, essential to the survival of our planet.


We are proud of, but also challenged to organize the Velo-city 2021, at a time when the bicycle has been conquering the deserved public space and people's daily lives, for the evident benefits it provides in terms of preventing disease, reducing pollution and increasing well-being. We therefore welcome you to this international meeting, which we will do everything in our power to make it a great celebration of diversity, people, thoughts and cultures.


Luís Natal Marques
EMEL President


EMEL President

Lisbon was the city chosen by the European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF) to hold Velo-city 2021, one of the largest cycling mobility conferences in the world. This event is the result of the recognition of the efforts undertaken to promote cycling mobility and results in a unique opportunity to position a paradigm shift, through articulated strategies, transforming planning from a city once car-centred, to a city more people-focused, more vibrant, inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.


Velo-city 2021 aims to disseminate knowledge and information, inspire and involve all citizens to present the benefits of best environmental practices, in order to encourage the recognition of cycling as a more favourable means of transport, and promote its wider use. Lisbon as we know it today is the result of the development of urban cycling strategies, based on a pedestrian transport model, which has become a reality over the last decade.


During this period, among the positive aspects are the civic and associative movements supporting the use of the bicycle, which were born all over the country and which were determinant for the changes adopted by municipalities and governments. It is therefore essential to integrate cycling into transport planning, spatial planning and other relevant aspects of activity sectors.


For Lisbon, the Velo-city 2021 conference is not an end in itself, nor a milestone in closing a development cycle, but an opportunity to assess what has been done so far, and above all to ensure greater commitment in the future in order to further accelerate change.


For this reason, the application of Velo-city 2021 Lisboa is supported by Lisbon Municipality, in collaboration with cyclists' associations and defense groups, cyclists' federations, local agents, academia and industry.


All these entities work together towards a specific goal: to promote the bicycle use, not only in Lisbon, but as an example for many other cities around the world; a change considered essential, from a European point of view, to achieve the economy’s decarbonization targets and to fulfil the environmental commitments to which Portugal is also bound, including the growth of cyclable urban mobility throughout the world.