The Green Mayor of Hanover, Belit Onay, rides a cargo bike on the cycle path on Friedrichswall.
Image: Picture Alliance

First the SPD and the Greens formed a coalition with each other in Hanover, now they are fighting each other. It's about cycle streets and parking spaces, but much more.

EA cyclist and a truck face each other in a narrow street. For forty minutes. Neither of them wants to give in. The video from Hanover caused a stir across Germany six years ago. The case continues to have an impact in the Lower Saxony state capital to this day. A short time later, a resident of Kleefelder Strasse turned to the administrative court. The judges ruled that Kleefelder Straße was far too narrow for its status as a bicycle street that is also open to car traffic because of the parking spaces on the edge. The city administration came to the conclusion that parking spaces would now have to be eliminated in many other bicycle streets in the city in order to comply with the ruling.

Reinhard Bingener

Political correspondent for Lower Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Bremen based in Hanover.

For the Green Mayor Belit Onay, the verdict was at first glance a stroke of luck. Because it forced the city administration to do something the Greens want anyway: fewer parking spaces.