Wednesday, June 15, 2011

5 Cities, 5 Perspectives On Bicycles In Cities

Many people who ride their bikes on city streets (like myself) have an uneasy relationship with motor vehicles and urban layouts.

However, not every city treats bicyclists the same way, so here are five perspectives on city bicycling by location:

1. Toronto: Rob Ford, the city's bike-skeptical Mayor, is okay with them as long as they're painted neon colors:
Mugging for cameras in council chamber, Mr. Ford’s impromptu photo op came following the launch of “The Good Bike Project,” which will reclaim abandoned two wheelers, paint them bright colours and place them around the city. It’s an idea by artists Caroline Macfarlane and Vanessa Nicholas, who one day decided to paint an unwanted bike outside the OCAD Student Gallery on Dundas Street hot pink, only to get a ticket from the city saying it could not be on public property.

Scarborough councillor Gary Crawford, an artist himself, picked up the young women’s cause and the city has since backed off.
2. Chicago: Part of the street I would take to work every day (if Chicago weather didn't completely blow this year) has a new protected bike lane:
Mayor Rahm Emanuel held a press event at the site of the new lane, which will connect Milwaukee Avenue and Wells Street on Kinzie, and reaffirmed his support for biker safety. He also repeated his campaign pledge to expand protected bike lanes by 25 miles a year for each year of his four-year term. And Department of Transportation Commissioner Gabe Klein said his department was up to the challenge.
3. New York City: This informational video conclusively proves that riding in the bike lane is a great idea, except when its not:

4. Shenzhen: The rapidly-growing Chinese city banned noiseless electric bikes over too many accidents:
The ban was justified by officials stating that electric bikes were blamed for 64 deaths in 268 roads accidents last year.

The city has over 500,000 electric bikes and the ban is believed to greatly increase the operational costs of express delivery companies.

All over China, including capital Beijing, noiseless electric bikes are becoming immensely popular as more and more people opted for them to beat the traffic jams and reduce transport costs.
5. Philadelphia: Hipster City Cycle is a computer game modeled on 8-bit Nintendo games the fixed-gear bike subculture. As you can see, this is brilliant on a number of levels:

Also, don't forget to wear your helmet.


Joe Carani said...

No Portland bike culture! WTF!

Jason said...

You can probably file Portland's bike culture under the Hipster City Cycle game. Philly's just a less stereotypical backdrop for it.

Like What You Read? Share It.

Share |