Cycle ringroad for Rome

GRAB bicycle greenway gets green light.

Rome is to create a 44-km cycle-pedestrian path around the capital, following the signing of a memorandum of understanding by the Italian transport minister Graziano Delrio and Rome's mayor Virginia Raggi on 21 September.

Known as the Grande Raccordo Annulare delle Bici, or GRAB (after Rome’s GRA ringroad), the ambitious scheme will unite the ancient Appia Antica with the contemporary MAXXI Museo delle Arti del XXI secolo, connecting the Colosseum to the Vatican, as well as the river Tiber with the city’s parks.

The project is an initiative of environmental association Legambiente and VeloLove, an organisation that promotes cultural initiatives involving mainly urban cyclists but also pedestrians, commuters and public transport users.

The co-ordinators say that the costs are not high and could be covered by public-private partnerships. They also say that 80 per cent of the route is already in place and ready to cycle safely.

The GRAB route is mainly flat and runs predominantly along existing pedestrian walkways and bicycle paths as well as parks and river banks, and will connect cyclists and pedestrians to several railway stations and metro lines.

It is expected to be operational in 2018.