Just got back from a 2 week euro cruise (observations on biking)...

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by bakaneko, May 14, 2016.

  1. bakaneko

    bakaneko Active Member

    Heelo fiends, I am from Wisconsin and just got back from a 2 week Scandinavia-Russia cruise. There are a lot of bikes in Europe. I started in Amsterdam and there are lanes specifically for bikes and pedestrians. And, the bike lanes are not small but can fit maybe 3 bikers a breast with enough room for them to maneuver. The bike lanes on major streets are also separated by a concrete barrier or metal bar fence and are clearly marked or colored (usually a dull red). This infrastructure is common in most of the cities that I went to with a lot of bikers (Amsterdam, Stockholm, Helinski, Copenhagen).

    Sad thing was that I saw almost no motorized bicycles except for one in Helinski, Finland. And, that bike design was the EU specific one where the motor is integrated into the bicycle at the bottom of the bike. And, that single motorized bike was probably ridden illegally. Copenhagen is like the bike capital of the world; there are 2 bikes per every citizen apparently and bikes have their own paths and all motorist seem to mind and respect them. Entire blocks are literally filled with bikes and folks really seem to love riding them.

    Well, too bad, we can't get that sort of unity here in the states. I feel like a second hand citizen whenever I am on the road riding as if they "allow" me to be there slightly slowing down their rushed commutes. :(

    Thought I just shared that. And, their locks are on average subpar too. But, then I don't think they have much crime in those cities. Copenhagen, Denmark is like a model city - great architecture between old and new, well managed roads, almost carbon neutral as a city, clean streets and rivers, happy people, healthy innovative economy, and a sh*t ton of bikes.
    FurryOnTheInside likes this.

  2. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods Well-Known Member

    Yes. Some of the photos and videos I've seen of bicycle culture there are downright mouth-watering.

    Imagine our communities living like that. Commuting to work you'd see people you recognize. Some of them would be people you work with. You'd chat a bit with them. And about half of them would be members of the opposite sex! It'd be great!

    Now think about the packs of cars that most of us commute among every day. Not nearly as much fun, huh?
  3. Timbone

    Timbone Active Member

    The American auto-based transit system is a dinosaur waiting to die. Think of the wasted resources! On average, car ownership costs $9,000/year in direct costs - the equivalent to housing costs!
  4. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods Well-Known Member

    My paternal grandfather was a citizen of the Netherlands before coming to America and getting citizenship here. Had I thought about it after high school or so, I probably could have gotten Dutch citizenship through him. I suppose I still could. But now I'm in my late 50s with a wife and grown kids here. I won't be making a move like that now.

    But as a serious life-long cyclist, I could have been happy settling in Amsterdam or one of those other cities there.

    I should have married my wife and then dragged her over there. :)

    She might have thrown a fit over something like that. But maybe she'd have found herself enjoying it in the end.

    Ahh.....what could have been.....
  5. jaguar

    jaguar Well-Known Member

    bike riding is great when there are bike paths.
    I would love to see a pro-bike city, any where!
  6. Rob H

    Rob H Member

    Come to NY There are over 400,000 people that ride their bikes to work everyday with bike lanes only