Belfast Telegraph

Cyclists to get freedom of Belfast for Ciclovia festival

By Claire McNeilly

Get on your bike is the message from the organisers of a major cycling event which intends to take Belfast by storm.

The health and safety-based initative, named Ciclovia, will close part of the city to traffic on Sunday, October 4 from 9am until 12.45pm.

It will start at Botanic Gardens and follow a route along Botanic Avenue, Shaftesbury Square, Dublin Road and Bedford Street to the City Hall before returning along the same route.

The PSNI has agreed to help with the control and redirection of traffic and this vehicle-free zone will be open for the duration of the event.

Both hubs - at Botanic Gardens and City Hall - will also play host to community, cultural and sporting events.

Event managers Pioneer Group said it was designed to encourage family participation, healthier lifestyles and engendering community spirit. Former Belfast Lord Mayor Mairtin O Muilleoir brought fellow politicians, statutory agencies and biking advocates together to form a committee to advance Ciclovia Belfast.

The keen cyclist said : "Ciclovia - initiated in Bogota, Colombia, in 1974 and where today 120km of roads are closed every Sunday to car traffic and the city given back to bikes - is a great way of giving the streets and roads of Belfast back to the people."

Belfast Telegraph

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