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Call for Paris to Ban Bikes at Night

A Parisian councillor is calling on the City Council to ban motorcycles and scooters from riding through the French capital between the hours of 10pm and 7am. According to French news source, The Connexion, Pierre-Yves Bournazel describes the late night/early morning noise of powered two-wheelers as a “scourge” for the city’s inhabitants.

Not surprisingly, in a city in which thousands use a bike and or scooter as primary transport, the suggestion is a tad controversial, though even Msr Bournazel accepts that there would need to be exceptions for commuters and those required to ride on two wheels at night, such as the Gendarmerie.

Jean-Marc Belotti of the FFMC (the French equivalent of the BMF) probably spoke for many motorcyclists when he pointed out that overnight traffic noise has many sources apart from bikes. “We make noise like other road users,” he said, “but I can tell you that most of the noise (on the roads) is generated by heavy vehicles passing over cobbles, and by horns and sirens.” Parisians do have some sympathy for vehicle restrictions, having recently voted to charge space-hungry SUVs extra for parking, but banning such a fundamental form of transport looks unlikely.

BMF Chair Jim Freeman said: “I wish Jean-Marc and his friends ‘bonne chance’. I’ve been on an FFMC demo against the introduction of the Parisian ULEZ a few years back, they’re organised and committed, they need to be. Jean-Marc was one of the organisers, and a very nice guy. He’s quite right about the noise, the best noise abatement measure in Paris would be removing the cobbles, which might reduce the impact of riots as well!”

Written by Peter Henshaw

Top image courtesy of Schezar