Healthy Spaces & Places Healthy Spaces & Places

Case Studies

Cycling in Sydney City, New South Wales

Town/Region | Sydney City
State | NSW
Context | City centre
Target Group | Employers, City workers
Timing | Current
Weblink | Click here to view the website.
Key Principles
  • People engaging in regular physical activity
  • Sustained economic wellbeing
  • Positive health impacts


The Cycling in the City program was developed by the City of  Sydney with the aims of increasing:

  • the cycling skills and knowledge of participants
  • the number of trips to work by bicycle, and 
  • the number of people who cycle regularly to work in each workplace and to the CBD overall. 

The Cycling in the City program used a ‘capacity-building’ approach, which conceptualises, plans and evaluates activities for organisational change and creates ‘capacity’ (here, cycling awareness and skills) across levels – one-to-one, in groups and within and across organisations. The Cycling in the City program conducted capacity building in workplaces, providing training, support and incentives for people who do not already ride to work in return for them riding to work at least once a week for three months and recording the kilometres travelled alongside any relevant experiences.

Key Features

  • More than 90 per cent of 125 people who completed the second round of Cycling in the City say they will continue to ride to work regularly.
  • Reported health benefits included weight loss, improved blood pressure and increased well-being.
  • Successful support by employers. A commitment from most of the participants’ host organisations to continue to support cycling as a legitimate means of travelling to work.
  • The program has received two awards, through the Heart Foundation Kellogg Local Government Awards and Environs Australia.
  • Raised the profile of cycling in the City of Sydney and helped support the development of the City’s Cycling Strategy.


  • The program design was intended to achieve short-term goals (for employees newly proficient in cycling to work), as well as long-term goals (the continuity of internal support for cycling at the workplace through the roles of workplace co-ordinators).
  • A comprehensive, workplace-based program that works both at an organisational and individual level to build capacity can lead to significant changes, both in terms of increasing the number of people cycling to work and improving workplace culture.

Click here for more detailed information on the Cycling in Sydney City program. 

Last updated on 12th June, 2009

Sponsors This project was funded by the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing.