Thursday, October 30, 2008

Bike Dispencer

The Bike Dispenser is a fully automated, space-saving storage and dispensary system for bicycles. It was developed to increase ease-of-accessibility to those business areas lying within three kilometers of commonly used public transportation junctions. And although the initial target-users for the Bike Dispenser are indeed commuters, its ease-of-use, simplicity, adaptability and cost-effectiveness make it applicable to a multitude of purposes like parking-facilities, metro stations, shopping centers etc. The Bike Dispenser is the most compact storage system for bicycles in the world, with specially designed bicycles positioned a mere 17 cm apart from each other. This makes the cost for the system an amazing 70% lower than other known automated bicycle storage systems.The Bike Dispenser capitalizes on the idea of the bicycle as the missing, final link in the commuter’s mobility chain. Furthermore, since the bicycles are stored inside, the risk of theft, vandalism and wear of the bicycles is reduced considerably.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Cycling Cities = Sustainable Cities

Throughout Europe, increased traffic in town and city centers has resulted in chronic congestion, with the many adverse consequences that this entails in terms of delays and pollution. Air and noise pollution is getting worse year by year. Urban traffic is responsible for 40% of CO2 emissions and 70% of emissions of other pollutants arising from road transport.
Cities can benefit greatly from cycling. However, the number of road traffic accidents in towns and cities is also growing each year: one in three fatal accidents now happen in urban areas, and it is the most vulnerable people, namely pedestrians and cyclists, who are the main victims. By integrating cycling planning in their urban mobility policies, local authorities guarantee the improvement of the attractiveness and safety of their cities. Spicycles has addressed main stream elements of cycling policy that can help cities to improve, also in East European countries. Spicycles made this overview in Polish, Czech, Rumanian and Hungarian.

Monday, October 27, 2008

One of those days in Amsterdam

During evening rush hour Amsterdammers daily cycle 250,000 kilometers / 155,000 miles !
This should be easily challenged. Amsterdam only has 750,000 inhabitants of whom 80,000 can be found on their bikes during evening rush hour. On an average they bike 3 kilometers from work to home.
Which city takes up this challenge?
video
Mark Bakker of Super 208 made a longer version of which this is a clip.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Free use of bikes for commuters in Amsterdam

In a pilot, commuters will be offered free use of an OV-fiets (public transport bicycle) to travel to Amsterdam Zuid railway station. The aim of the pilot is to see whether the bicycles can be used more efficiently. The pilot's target group are commuters from Amsterdam who work at least 32 hours per week and who travel to work by train from Amsterdam Zuid. If they use an OV-fiets instead of their own bicycle, they will no longer have to bother about finding a place to park the bicycle and about bicycle maintenance. During the day, the same bicycles will be rented out to commuters who arrive at Amsterdam Zuid and work in the city. This way, the OV-fietsen will be used more intensively and fewer parking spaces for bicycles will be needed at the station. Participants in the pilot will take the bicycle home at night and get to use the bicycle during the weekend as well. The pilot starts on 25 November. Those who are interested in participating can request information through info@ov-fiets.nl . OV-fietsen are normally rented out to subscribers from stations and a few other locations for 2.85 euro per 20 hours.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Pedaling Transportation Alternatives

Summer Streets took place in New York for three consecutive Saturdays in August 2008 from 7:00 am - 1:00 pm. The route connected the Brooklyn Bridge with Central Park and there were recommended connections to the Hudson River Greenway, allowing participants to plan a route as long or short as they wish. This event took a valuable public space - New York's City's streets - and opened them up to people to play, walk, bike, and breathe. Paul White, Executive Director of Transportation Alternatives evaluates the summer of 2008 in an interview in The New York Observer, as the ‘Summer of Car-Free Streets,’. He states that in a few years from now we might look back at this summer as the summer when car-free streets hit the big time and people woke up to the enormous latent demand for car-free living and walking. In this interview Paul also touches on many issues like bicycle safety, parking issues, transit and elections. Paul cites street design as the biggest impediment to safe cycling.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Copenhagen creates a network 'OF' cyclists

MIT researchers unveiled a major new project on Oct. 10 in Copenhagen aimed at transforming bicycle use in Denmark's largest city, promoting urban sustainability and building new connections between the city's cyclists. The project, called SmartBiking, will utilize a novel self-organizing smart-tag system that will allow the city's residents to exchange basic information and share their relative positioning with each other. The project will be implemented citywide in time for the November 2009 U.N. Climate Change Conference, which Copenhagen will host. They have developed a Facebook application called 'I crossed your path,' which creates a social network for cyclists, allowing them to link up with people they may have ridden past during the day and potentially establish new connections. The smart tags will also allow individuals to monitor the distance they travel while cycling as part of a citywide "green mileage" initiative, which is similar to a frequent-flyer program. Ultimately, fine-grained monitoring of urban activities could allow cities such as Copenhagen to enter carbon-trading schemes.

Air Quality Management Course

The Stockholm Environment Institute has launched a new Foundation Course on Air Quality Management in Asia, which is NOW available on-line. The course is focusing on Asia but it contains a host of good information for anybody. It is for learners studying the issue without the support of a classroom teacher and is aimed at individuals with some basic knowledge of the environment and air pollution issues. The course consists of six modules covering the key components of air quality management together on-line resources. An international team of air pollution specialists has developed the course with funding from the EU and additional support from a number of other organizations. One of the topics topic is on traffic emissions: The steady growth in road traffic has resulted in the increasing contribution from traffic to urban air pollution, especially volatile organic compounds (VOCs), CO, NOx and PM. Uncontrolled motor vehicles, particularly those with diesel and twostroke engines are the most important sources of air pollution in most urban areas in Asia. Asia has the largest motorcycle fleet in the world.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Pre-occupied with gold

Velo Mondial has always emphasized the relevance of glamor for cycling and now the industry has followed suit. As of 7 September, the world will never be quite the same again. That is when the Scandinavian design company AURUMANIA will be launching the world’s most lavish and expensive bike. But it will only be a tiny, exclusive group of people who can become the proud owners of these gold bikes, which each bear a price tag of € 80,000. That’s because only 10 will ever be made, all numbered. Each bike is hand-built, and then plated with 24-carat gold and generously adorned with more than 600 fine Swarovski crystals. The handlebar grips are made of hand-sewn, chocolate-brown leather, and a moulded Brooks leather saddle provides exactly the right nostalgic touch. Lock it well before you park it.