City Labs
City Labs

City Move Living Labs

CITY-MOVE will be implemented in six cities: Bogota, Lima, Kampala, Rotterdam, Antwerp and Ljubljana. The cities represent a diversity in continents, income levels, ratio of economic growth to population growth, and have real potential to learn for different target populations.



Two GAPPA interventions have been identified for CITY-MOVE support:


Early stage: Special Project Legacy Pan American and Parapan American Games (Legacy) is an entity attached to the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, supported by the Regional Directorate of Education of Metropolitan Lima, aims to improve access to and increase use of sports facilities installations, in districts such as Villa María del Triunfo a district with great inequality (398,433 inhabitants where 18.4% live in poverty). CITY-MOVE target is to reach approximately 5% of those, meaning 20,000 people. It is not yet known how this process can be best targeted to the needs of people.


Late stage: the Green Belt Independencia, led by NGO Periferia Ciudad Viva, initiative has developed an urban park on the fringes of the district of Independencia (about 211,360 inhabitants of which 14.8% live in poverty). The green belt avoids urban expansion towards sensitive ecosystems, contributes to disaster risk management and climate adaptation while aiming to improve well-being and health in the district. However, its effects on physical activity and health indicators have not yet been evaluated. There is also interest in replicating measures for urban greening and accessibility, especially for the elderly, to increase the number of people that benefit from it.



Displays much interest in promoting physical activity as indicated by its hosting of the 2018 Walk21 conference attended by 26,000 people, its signing of the International Charter for Walking, and the Move Bogota large-scale programme developed by the Department of Recreation and Sports. CITY-MOVE will work with the following GAPPA interventions:


Early stage: 7 Happiness centres (Centros Felicidad) with an area of 12,000 square meters each are designed for exercise, recreation, leisure and culture free to the surrounding community. Different centres are at different stages of development, led and funded by several city districts (Fontanar, Tunal, San Cristóbal, San Bernardo, Gibraltar and Cometas), covering approximately 200,000 inhabitants. However, it is unclear if they are enhancing PA among people living in deprived neighbourhoods or if add-on measures are needed to promote PA. CITY-MOVE target is to reach 5% meaning 10,000 people. CITY-MOVE will work with two implementing organisations in the northern part of Bogota, where FUJNC is located: 1) Subred Norte which encompasses the public hospitals which are the contact point for local communities and oversees all community-based research in the area; Subre Norte is part of the Secretary of Health of the Municipality which allows the agreement to extend to all of Bogotá. 2) The Institute for Sports and Recreation, which is part of the Municipality.


Late stage: The Ciclovia mass participation event run by the District Institute of Recreation and Sport involves closure of 120 km of roads on Sundays to allow for pedestrians and cyclists to undertake recreational physical activity. It reaches 0.6-1.4 million participants every week, with 77% having a low income. While Ciclovia has proven successful and cost-effective in Bogota, its success has not been well replicated in other cities. CITY-MOVE will thus aim to identify cross contextual lessons learnt for effectiveness.



Kampala has several challenges but also opportunities for physical activity. 42% of the population use walking as their main mode of transport out of necessity. Recreational physical activity is minimal with very few organised public spaces facilitating physical activity, because they are not well maintained, difficult to access, not well connected, or have inadequate security. Furthermore, Kampala has very high air pollution levels. The large streams of traffic, poor road construction and low attention for vulnerable road users lead to pedestrians contributing to 50% of road fatalities. The authorities made efforts for improvement with an annual national physical activity day and a walkability workshop in 2018, together with UN Environment and W21. CITY-MOVE will work with the following interventions:


Early stage: The Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) initiated a car-free day in 2011 – the first in Africa – and relaunched it in the central business district in 2023 (830,000 inhabitants) to encourage physical activity, reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality. However, it is not known to what extent the car-free day promotes physical activity or how it can be expanded in geographic scope or regularity.


Late stage: KCCA published the first non-motorised transport (NMT) strategy in Africa (2012) and invested in upgrading road quality of 8 important roads in the city, codenamed NMT Pilot Corridor. With 42% of the population using walking as their main mode of transport, potential reach is 714,000 people, but the NMT has not led to increased utilisation and safety. The Ministry of Works and Transport has recently committed to a population based survey to collect data from users and non-users on barriers and experiences, which will feed into the CITY MOVE interventions.



Antwerp signed the International Charter for Walking in 2018 and is developing a Pedestrian Policy Plan in connection with slow-speed routes. The city has started the implementation of interventions in the active environment domain, e.g. garden/living streets in co-creation with inhabitants that are more accessible for physical activity. In the active people domain, physical activity coaches and the ‘bike school’ that provides cycling lessons for adults targeting reaching 700 people each year, largely women with a migration background. CITY-MOVE works with three interventions:


Early stage: In the active societies’ domain, the City’s Sports Department has begun developing a project at ‘Linkeroever’ (122,000 people) to reduce street intimidation of girls in the city, aiming to create a safe space for them to be social. There is scope to use sports to entice girls to use urban spaces, but it is not yet known how best to achieve this. Antwerp has 11,000 girls between 10-19 year, of which the project ultimately aims to reach at least 50% being 5500.


Late stage: The ‘Health Kiosk’, a connecting centre between neighbourhood and partners for health prevention located in the deprived neighbourhood Borgerhout and run by Logo Antwerpen reaching 70 people weekly. CITY-MOVE evaluations will focus on sustainability & scale-up.


Failed project: the ‘Square Full of Health’ (Paardenmarkt) was meant to re-design a centre street in co-creation with shop owners, and inhabitants, but despite many participatory sessions, authorities decided not to deliver the interventions. The obstacles have not been evaluated.


LOCATION: Rotterdam

The city recognises the impact of movement on health. Working on the assumption that active mobility made a 20% contribution to a 2% reduction in the number of diabetic patients, more walking means an annual savings of €13 million on healthcare costs for the city. Research by the Board of Government Advisors (‘Healthy City on Foot’) confirmed to politicians that walking is an easy way to get more exercise and that the effects of daily physical activity outweigh the impact of the poor air quality, also inherent to life in a big city. Rotterdam hosted the Walk21 conference in 2019 and signed the International Charter for Walking. Rotterdam has a Walking Plan for 2018-2020 which included a citizen consultation. CITY-MOVE works with two interventions in Rotterdam:


Early stage: the city is developing a 30 km speed limit to improve safety, carbon emissions and air quality. The theoretical reach is the entire population being 623,000. Potential to connect this intervention in transport with promotion of physical activity has not yet been explored.


Late stage: General Practitioners in Rotterdam can refer patients to walk and movement programmes designed specifically for minority groups, yet reach, uptake and effects of these programmes have not been evaluated.


LOCATION: Ljubijana

The city has a Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan that has increased pedestrian space by 620% through closing the city centre to all motorised vehicles. This space is now used for cultural, social, and sporting events throughout the year, including several mass walking events. The plan also includes targets to increase walking by 20% and cycling by 40%. CITY-MOVE will work with two interventions in Ljubljana:


Early stage: a move app for citizens will be developed based on a serious gaming approach. It aims to educate and encourage exercise for those citizens that do not respond nor engage (due to physical or mental limitations) in mass events and is harder to motivate to adopt a healthy lifestyle and physical activity (12% people lives below risk of poverty threshold in Slovenia, 20% being elderly). CITY-MOVE aims to reach 2,5% of city population approximately 7000 people.


Late stage: the Walk along the Wire event, held each year in May, involves 3000 participants of at least 65 years and includes special trails for children/elderly. Despite mass participation in Walk along the Wire, there have been few evaluations to measure impact of participation on physical and mental health.