Nordend is a neighborhood of the metropolitan city Frankfurt am Main. Frankfurt is often called “Mainhattan,” a play on Manhattan, as it is Germany’s financial capital and the only city in Germany with skyscrapers. Frankfurt’s Nordend neighborhood has recently seen a change in its traffic makeup and main roads have been painted red. It’s part of a citizens initiative called “Radentschied” which roughly translates to “decision for bike riders.”
Starting in 2019 Frankfurt has started turning main roads into predominantly bike roads, as well as re routing major traffic channels for cars in a bid to turn the city bike friendly, similar to Amsterdam and Copenhagen. The red markings symbolize that bike riders have the absolute right of way.
However, these measures have caused a divide in the Nordend neighborhood. People have been hanging up posters protesting the new traffic policies. The posters translate to “No to road closures, Yes to reasonable traffic policies”. A counter citizens initiative called “Gemeinsam Unterwegs” which translates to “together on the road” has been created as a result. Nordend resident Dagmar Hesse who hung up a poster outside of her home hopes the city of Frankfurt will create traffic policies that take into account all traffic participants.
When “Radentschied ” was first established they managed to gather 40,000 signatures for their cause, “Gemeinsam Unterwegs” is currently short of 4000 signatures for their cause. For now its unclear if the “Gemeinsam Unterwegs” will be successful in trying to change the new traffic policies that already have more bikers on the path.