Slow races, bicycle convoy, disguised cyclists, the megaphone at hand…
In January, throughout France and for their first national call, the "velorutionnaires" will pedal to protest against the omnipresence of the car in general, and the Paris-Dakar in particular. It starts this Saturday in Lisbon, where the rally started, in Paris and in other cities of France. These demonstrations, Critical mass as the Anglo-Saxons say, impose themselves on traffic like an isolated cyclist cannot. Two-wheelers meet in number on the road. "The goal is not to create traffic jams", explains an activist. Rather to make a non-polluting traffic jam.
The first “velorution” took place in Paris three years ago. It quickly became monthly. Other collectives followed in the provinces. These scattered velorutionaries are starting to federate via the Velorution.org site.
“Associations for cycling have existed since the 70s. Cycling is a renewal of this associative commitment for cycling. We are part of an altermobilist movement, close to decreasing ”, specifies Julien, a Parisian cycling specialist.
"We are campaigning for an equitable sharing of floor space, to protect the most fragile and least polluting users", explains Jérôme Desquilbet, vice-president of the Paris association. Inevitably, the 750 motor vehicles launched in the African dunes do not fit into the picture. The rally advertises: "Dare the great adventure!" “There is a gap between the idea of the car projected in the media and what to do in the city. Velorution denounces this masquerade which pollutes the air and the spirits ”, Desquilbet continues.
Cycling enthusiasts, in informal association with antipub and other environmental activists, are calling for concrete measures: reduce speed in town to 30 km / h or strengthen the network of cycle paths "So that people are not afraid to take their bikes". A local commitment that goes beyond the Dakar.
This Saturday in Paris (14 p.m., place du Châtelet), in Angers, Tours, Lille and Rennes. January 14 in Montpellier and Avignon. The 21st in Strasbourg and Nancy.