Imagine a place where you get free beer for riding your bike – no frills or faffage, just a simple exhange. Well thanks to The Bella Mossa, that’s exactly what the Italian city of Bologna is doing.
La Bella Mossa is a new government funded scheme in the northern Italian city of Bologna, which rewards it’s citizens for taking more sustainable forms of transport around instead of cars. This could include a bus, your bicycle or simply walking between destinations.
It all works through an app called BetterPoints, and users simply log the trips they make on their phone and then slowly accumulate points over time. It’s these points that you can redeem at over 100 different stores and businesses around the city. Anything from cinema tickets to a pint, you can literally get free beer for riding your bike.
Not only is this initiative setting a great example to other cities around the world in terms of reducing carbon emissions in their atmosphere, it’s helping to combat the growing traffic and congestion issue in Bologna.
Created by Marco Amodori in 2017, Bella Mossa (meaning ‘good job’ in English) is now being used by 10,000 people in the Italian city, and last year 3.7 million kilometres of sustainable journeys were clocked.
Additionally, through the information collected through the app, the government is able to accurately assess and analyse how people move around the city, in order to make better planning choices to relieve peak hour stresses.
Talking to the BBC, a scheme ambassador explains how the competitive side to the rewards system actually encourages more sustainable journeys, as you can compete against friends in leagues with leaderboards showing who has done the most.
He says, “you make a game of something that it serious..so this is the public administration challenging it’s own citizens in a game way, so if you and I are competing and it’s raining, who is going by car?”.
The scheme, of course, relies on the productive cooperation of the administrative council, the private businesses and the users; it is this triad that is not just helping the environment, but actually drawing the community itself closer together.
It seems like an absolute no-brainer; everybody wins! There are obviously administrative challenges involved with the scheme. You have to get a good amount of businesses, restaurants or bars on board with it to make the scheme effective, which would make introducing the scheme in larger cities a much bigger challenge.
HEKKTA are hugely jealous of any citizen of Bologna right now!