Just under a dozen electronically assisted rickshaws will travel through the capital on Friday and Saturday, taking Brussels residents along a pre-defined route for free. These rickshaw taxis, which are both transport and an advertising gimmick, will leave from Bois du Cambre at 11am, reaching the pedestrian area in the town centre in the afternoon. Though it’s a one-off for Brussels, rickshaw taxis have already been operating in London and Paris for a few years.
“The aim is to show you can travel without polluting”, explains Dominique Maeck, co-founder of Cyclommunication, which is behind the Brussels initiative. The company mainly does events and festivals, “but, eventually, we want to offer citizens a real transport service in areas not covered by taxis or public transport”, he says. He added it would be “a first step towards a sustainable town”.
As these rickshaw taxis are financed by advertising, their development depends on partnerships with advertisers.
The rickshaw taxis will leave Bois du Cambre at 11am this Friday and Saturday, and go through the Châtelain and Louise neighbourhoods. They will reach the pedestrian area in the town centre in the afternoon.