The Sun Cycle Route is one of the first developments in Italy of the concept of Bike Tour, the bike routes that disclose the territorial resources and heritage to tourists. The entire route is the Italian section of Eurovelo 7, the cycle path connecting Malta to the North Cape, featuring one of the four cycle paths forming the national system of tourist cycle paths.
The technical and economic feasibility project (PFTE) developed with the coordination of Politecnica by the design team, has allowed to lay the foundations for the future design phases of the construction of a new bike path to cover over 680 km, starting from Florence to reach Verona across 4 regions: Emilia Romagna, Lombardy, Tuscany and Veneto.
The PFTE has therefore been developed with particular attention to the enhancement of historical, artistic and natural heritage, as well as the usability of the infrastructure with particular regard to intermodality with other transport systems and the development of eco-sustainable tourist accommodation specifically dedicated to cycling.
The itinerary, divided into 11 sections, is formed of existing cycle path sections to be upgraded, new cycle paths, shared cycle-vehicle lanes to be adapted to protection and safety standards.
The contractual time available – 90 days including winter surveys – required a dedicated time organization by the Design Team. The 4 work teams selected to develop the study, after the articulation of the project into specific sections relating to the individual disciplines, have operated simultaneously on specific sections, implementing a strategy of continual coordination and discussion.
The constant dialogue with the Client and all the Stakeholders involved – over 20 information meetings – the extensive territorial coverage and the route length contributed to defining the project of the Sun Cycle Route as a “unicum” within the Italian infrastructural context.
The project pursues the strategy “3D – density, design and diversity of choice”, identifying the theme of identity as the foundation of territorial quality and assuming active conservation as the main tool for the landscape sustainable enhancement. The “territorial density of locations, goods and landscapes” that the Cycle path itself effectively connects, encourages to walk or bike to reach urban centers, to discover recreational and cultural sites for sports or leisure activities.
The route has also been designed to be easily used by all types of public, according to the morphology and landscape characteristics of the places, in order to encourage as much as possible the use of the route in its entirety, both by cycle-tourists and by occasional users, mostly local level related.