Re: cycling It is Cost Effective

What is needed to induce the die-hard city commuters to leave behind their cars and adopt cycling as a mode of transport? Should the cost of using the car in central city areas be so cost prohibitive that only the those willing to part with large sums for the privilege persist? Or should urban designer adopt a range of innovative measures to entice inner city commuters to adopt what is afterall a healthier lifestyle alternative?

The McDonalds Cycle Centre in Chicago’s Millenium Park is leading the way in rethinking what it means to cycle and the sort of facilities which may transform the way commuting and recreational cycling is viewed. Philip Modest Schamberlan and + Anton Fromm’s Bicycle Hotel intends to entice the cyclist into the mountains in pursuit of a recreational touring lifestyle by providing an intriguing Fractal experience perched above Lake Garda.

2 thoughts on “Re: cycling It is Cost Effective

  1. Tom Turner

    The economists’ answer to the question is simple: road pricing. But how to price road usage is more difficult and depends on what is being charged for: supply (construction costs) or demand (congestion charging). The long-term solution may be GPS in motor vehicles but there are many alternatives and the old favourite is parking charges. Car drivers argue that what they pay in fuel tax and car tax more than pays for road construction, which is often true, but this does not take account of demand or of the difficulty in increasing supply. Building new roads in a high density city is hardly possible so we need to think about demand management – and also about the design challenge of making better use of scarce road space. This is where cycling comes in and in my view the best-governed countries in the world (according to the Prosperity website) have the best answers: Denmark, for example, spends 30%+ of the transport budget on provision for cyclists (which is 10 times as much as London). If cities make really good provision for cycling then more and more and more and more people will take to their pedals. London is not yet on the list of Most Bike Friendly Cities but the popularity of cycling is now advancing rapidly. The reasons are many: it is fashionable; the proportion of single people in central areas has risen and is rising; the roads are too congested and on-street parking has become expensive; car clubs provide for occasional car use; there is slightly better provision for cycling; the London bombings have made some people scared of public transport; public transport is very congested; bicycles are much better and waterproof clothing is very much better; the air is cleaner; employers have bike-purchase schemes and are providing lockers and showers for cyclists; cyclists have become aggressive in demanding their rights to roadspace; the London Mayor and the UK prime minister are both cyclists.


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