Monday, November 26, 2012

Bike Butlers and other services

The City of Copenhagen has been on a 'charm offensive' since April 2010. The goal is to get more people to use the bike racks around the city's Metro stations, instead of leaning them up against everything else. Here's the simple trick. If you park your bicycle illegally, the City will move it over to the bike racks. Instead of finger-wagging, they will then oil your chain, pump your tires and leave a little note on your bicycle asking to kindly use the bike racks in the future. How brilliant is that? And the great thing is that the initiative has worked. "It's about getting people to stop parking their bicycles in areas that emergency service vehicles need to access if there is an incident at a Metro station", said Project Leader Poul Erik Kinimond, as his colleague Morten Schelbech oils a chain in the background. Twice a day they move bicycles at the city's largest Metro stations. "We're been called "Bicycle Butlers". People really like what we do". The City of Amsterdam is considering Bike Butlers in an innovative plan on a cycling parking garden called "The Low Lijn". This is a reception facility for cyclists who park under this garden where they find first a lounge, with services like lockers, make up mirrors, police post, toilets, ticket terminals.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Dutch Royal Couple in Istanbul

Giving the right example

Preventable E-Bike Type Approval Abuse

In a dramatic appeal to all MEP’s, ETRA urges them not to vote article 2.2(g) of the compromise text in the Proposal for Regulation (on the approval and market surveillance) of two- or three-wheel vehicles and quadricycles. That article stipulates that the Regulation does not apply to vehicles primarily intended for off-road use and designed to travel on unpaved surfaces. According to ETRA, this article is a permit for manufacturers of electric bicycles to circumvent type-approval and to put vehicles on the market with optimum functional danger levels rather than safety levels. ETRA also calls the article a permit for manufacturers to put vehicles on the market for irresponsible consumers who are only interested in speed and power output.  ETRA issues a stark warning that article 2.2(g) will produce serious safety risks.The compromisetext on the Proposal for Regulation on the approval and market surveillance of two- or three-wheel vehicles and quadricycles still needs to be formally debated and voted in a Plenary session. That is scheduled for Monday 19 and Tuesday 20 November. Velo Mondial supports ETRA in their stance. Read on in Bike Europe


Friday, November 2, 2012

Wind in the back for cycling in NYC

In post-storm New York, the bike is having a moment of sorts.  With subways still not running under the East River or between Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn, traffic snarled in many places and lines for buses stretching for blocks, many people in Brooklyn took to bicycles on Thursday to get where they had to go. “I’m extremely glad I have a bike right now — it’s one of the best assets you can have,” said James Emery, 22, who was riding on Thursday afternoon from Williamsburg to Red Hook to help a friend whose screen-printing business had been flooded. Thomas Jarrels, 46, who biked home to Crown Heights from his job as a sous-chef at a Midtown law firm, said he was glad to have had an impetus to bike to work. He said he was a bike messenger in the 1980s and loved biking, but had never commuted by bike until the storm disabled the subway. Transportation Alternatives staff & volunteers and the NY Bicycle Ambassadors are out in full force helping New Yorkers with their post Sandy commutes. Just pulling your bicycle out after a long time? Have no fear, we are here to help!