According to a recent bicycling survey in Turku, 96 per cent of the residents are in favour of promoting bicycling in Turku. The bicycling survey, conducted for the first time, gauged the residents’ attitudes towards the promotion of bicycling as well as the opinion of those who do cycle on the cycling conditions and quality in Turku. The survey focused on cycling in wintertime.

Funders: Horizon 2020
Total budget: €17,974,993 / City of Turku and local partners €3,237,000
Schedule: 2016–2020
Project website:
Finnish project consortium:
Regional Council of Southwest Finland / Valonia and Lounaistieto
Turku University of Applied Sciences
Western Systems Oy
Turun Kaupunkiliikenne Oy
Gasum Oy
Union of the Baltic Cities, Sustainable Cities Commission

The residents lent strong support to the city’s goal to promote cycling and improve cycling conditions. Nearly all (96%) respondents were in favour of promoting bicycling. Turku is a bicycling city: according to the survey, 63% of adult residents cycle at least once a week in the summer and up to 74% cycle at least sometimes.


The residents of Turku also bicycle in wintertime. In winter, 23 per cent of residents cycle, whereas the same number is 11 per cent in Helsinki (2016). Regardless of the season, 43% of the residents of Turku cycle when there is no snow or ice on the ground.


Cyclists want to travel smoothly from one place to another, because the most common reason for cycling is to commute to work or educational institutes, and the most important reason for choosing to cycle is convenience, both in summer and in winter. However, the share and ease of commuting by bike are emphasised in wintertime.


Residents in all income classes and from all educational backgrounds bike in Turku. Bicycles also support other forms of travel. 15% of those who cycle daily when there is no snow on the ground also use public transport, and 23% use cars.


According to the residents that do cycle, Turku is a relatively good city to bicycle in. The majority (86%) is satisfied or fairly satisfied with Turku as a cycling city. Roughly the same number of people are satisfied with the flow of cycling (87%), but fewer people are satisfied with safety (77%).


People were less satisfied with cycling in the centre than in other areas of the city. Dissatisfaction was mostly due to the number of suitable routes, lane separation and bicycle parking areas, as well as special circumstances on bike lanes due to construction. Over a fifth of the respondents felt unsafe while cycling in Turku.

Of the residents that cycle all year, 72% were at least quite satisfied with the wintertime maintenance of the routes, although improvements were hoped for combatting slippiness and slush. The survey indicates that wintertime cycling would be increased if cyclists did not have to cycle among vehicle traffic and if the bike routes were less slippery.

According to the survey, the residents of Turku would cycle more if the bike route map were more comprehensive and biking safer. Biking would also increase if bike parking areas were better protected from vandalism and theft, the most congested routes were wider, the pavements were in better shape and winter maintenance were improved.

The survey also revealed that residents would also be interested in city bikes if they were available in convenient places (74%). City bikes were attractive due to the opportunities they offer for exercise and leisure biking.

The survey was conducted in the form of telephone interviews in November and December 2016. The sample comprised residents of Turku between the ages of 18 and 74. A total of 1,012 interviews were conducted, containing quotas based on age, gender and living area to correspond to the actual distribution of the population of Turku. The survey was conducted by Otantatutkimus Oy on behalf of the City of Turku. The survey was conducted in compliance with the SFS-ISO 20252 quality standard. The survey is one of the monitoring indicators in the international EU Horizon 2020-funded CIVITAS ECCENTRIC project (2016–2020) that develops innovative sustainable mobility in peri-central areas in five cities: Turku, Madrid, Stockholm, Munich and Ruse. The survey was conducted for the first time and it will be conducted again towards the end of the project.

Read more about the survey here (summary in Finnish, Swedish and English).