On the 8th and 9th of November 2017, the Interreg MedCycleTour project partners met in Nice, led by the Andalusia Region and hosted by the Département des Alpes-Maritimes. This European project, coordinated by the ECF – European Cyclists’ Federation, brings together many partners from the countries crossed by EuroVelo 8 – Mediterranean Route: Slovenia, Croatia, Greece, Italy, Spain, France and Cyprus.
The meeting was coordinated by Luis Ramajo Rodríguez, project leader on behalf of the Agencia de Obra Pública of the Junta de Andalusia and Jesús Freire of the ECF who recalled the challenges related to the development of the EuroVelo network and the impact of cycling destinations in Europe: “According to a European Parliament study published in 2012, every year, bicycle tourism in Europe generates 2.2 billion stays, 20 million overnight stays and 44 billion Euros”.
On these two days agenda : presentation of the business plan with the evaluation of the cycle route according to the EuroVelo criteria, production and dissemination of communication tools addressed to the general public, professionals and public actors at trans-national, national and regional levels (brochures, websites, mobile applications) and the support of local actors in the destination touristic development.
During the meeting, the partners took part in a bike tour on EuroVelo 8 – Mediterranean Route, between Nice and Villefranche-sur-Mer. It was an opportunity to test the route and discuss about the development of bicycle lanes to ensure the continuity of the cycle route.
The Département des Alpes-Maritimes, unique French partner of the project, invited La Méditerranée à vélo coordination in order to present the French section's latest news and action plan. This is to ensure the link with the European project actions and to take advantage of the opportunity of the MedCycleTour project to promote in the future a real European destination around the Mediterranean!