Lviv has its own vibrant cycle scene these days. The biking infrastructure still has a long way to go in order to reach European standards. However, the cycle chic movement, meaning people’s desire to bike in style and with comfort is extremely recognizable.
The cyclists in Lviv take the utmost pride in their bicycles. While there may be fewer cyclists in Lviv, then in neighboring Krakow for example, those who ride, do so in the uttermost style: atop impeccable, shiny bikes with beautiful leather accessories. These cyclists give us hope that someday soon we will see masses of everyday cyclists swarming the streets of Lviv, Kyiv, Odessa and other Ukrainian cities.
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Another exciting thing is that new developments in the city seem to be stimulating and in turn everybody witnesses a surge in all kinds of cycling. While parts of the cycling infrastructure still feel disjointed and disconnected, there are some shining sparks of hope that tempted cyclists to ride in true style: from families with small children to funky hipsters.
What adds to the cycle chic hope is a municipal bike rental system – the first one in Ukraine – that was launched in Lviv in 2015.Two Ukrainian companies – veliki.ua and Traffic Management – got a grant from the German company NextBike Gbmh and the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ) to create a municipal bike rental system. Its benefits are availability and affordability. Now launched in Kyiv NEXTBIKE initiative became super popular in Lviv over the last year. These days you can easily meet a banker in a smart suite rushing for a meeting or a cute couple heading for coffee on a NEXTBIKE rented bike.
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Renting a bike for even half a day when visiting Lviv this summer in order to explore city’s more remote attractions is a good alternative to using public transport or a cab. With its bike infrastructure developing each month, catching Lviv cycle hype is super easy.