Bike or walk to Open Streets MP

After a successful #AtoBChallenge to Open Streets Main Road, Open Streets and Metrorail invite everyone in Cape Town to take up the #AtoBChallenge to Open Streets Mitchell’s Plain Eisleben Road on Sunday 25 March.

A stretch of Eisleben Road, between Lavender Road and Montagu Drive, will become a space for people to walk, cycle, skate, explore, play, connect and learn and to get there, organisers are encouraging residents to use public and non-motorised transport.

The #AtoBChallenge is an Open Streets initiative in partnership with the WWF Nedbank Green Trust to encourage the public to move differently around the city by using bicycles, skateboards or their feet, or minibus taxis, buses and trains.

It promotes the use of low-carbon transport systems by educating the public on how they can contribute positively to mitigating against climate change.

Open Streets’ goal is to increase public and non-motorised transport use by challenging the perception that car ownership is inevitable in South Africa.

Given that transport accounts for 50% of energy consumption in Cape Town and 27% of its carbon emissions, Open Streets believes these activities can be a catalyst for decreasing the city’s carbon footprint in the long term.

By taking up the #AtoBChallenge to Open Streets Mitchell’s Plain, participants could win a bicycle.

To stand a chance of winning, take a picture or video of yourself commuting to Open Streets Mitchell’s Plain on your chosen mode of transport, post it to Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram with the hashtag #AtoBChallenge and tag @OpenStreetsCT (Twitter) or @OpenStreetsCapeTown (Facebook, Instagram).

Make sure to follow/like Open Streets first so you can see your post and then tell the #AtoBChallenge officials about your experience in person when you get to Open Streets Mitchell’s Plain.

The #AtoBChallenge officials will be awaiting you with a little present at Open Street Info Booth.

The #AtoBChallenge is open to all ages to ensure mass participation. Citizens can also take up the #AtoBChallenge by joining either the organised walking bus or bike bus to Open Streets Mitchell’s Plain and still be eligible to win the prize.

A bike bus is not an actual vehicular bus but a group of people cycling together on a set route following a set time table. Cyclist may join or leave the bike bus at various points along the route. A walking bus is also a fun, healthy, safe and sustainable way for travelling as a group.

The group walks together on a set route, picking up or dropping off “passengers” at specific bus stops. Walking buses are also used to raise awareness about the environment, crime, traffic congestion and help promote a healthy lifestyle.

The walking bus meeting point on Sunday 25 March is Mitchell’s Plain Town Centre (taxi/bus terminus) and will be departing at 12:30.

The bike bus meeting point is the Palmyra Junction in Claremont and the “bus” will depart at 10:00.

Metrorail has agreed to make a coach with staff available to take #AtoBChallenge commuters to Open Streets Mitchell’s Plain and back home.

Keith Edwards from Metrorail says: “Metrorail is proud to be part the #AtoBChallenge and we support the initiative of more people experiencing the train as they commute to Open Streets. We are committed to the provision of safety and comfort to all #AtoBChallenge participants heading to Open Streets Mitchell’s Plain on Sunday 25 March and commuters who rely on our service for mobility and access. This means that you are able to bring your bicycle or skateboard, etc. along to ensure you make the most of getting around.”

Bring your friends and neighbours. Above all, bring your family and share the experience­.

V To join one of these “buses”, participants can register on at www.openstreets.org.za, email sindile@­openstreets.co.za or call 084 551 2053.

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