TreeCycle is a sustainability campaign app that incentivizes urban professionals to commute by bike rewarding their traveled distance by planting trees within their city in an engaging way.

Cars are a major driver of greenhouse gas emissions in cities. They are responsible for 12% of total EU emissions of CO2. Hence, fostering the usage of bikes instead of cars in cities is in the interest of all its citizens. In Europe, the two cities that excel at motivating their citizens to use bikes more frequently are Amsterdam and Copenhagen.

TreeCycle is imagined to help to turn more cities throughout Europe into the new Amsterdam or Copenhagen. Citizens could track and log distances traveled by bike. Once 50km had been logged, those kilometers could be converted into a new tree. Thanks to a fictitious partnership between One Tree Planted – a non-profit organization planting trees around the world – and Gazelle – a popular Dutch bicycle brand – these trees would be paid for and planted in nearby parks.  

This project is an iOS app prototype. The concept was driven by the UN sustainable development goal “life on land” and was meant to encourage and reward everyday actions. The model of a campaign app was chosen so that the fictional sponsorship could pay for it but also use it as a stunt to incentivize a targeted city.