Links with your coffee – Saturday
June 28, 2008, 1:05 pm
Filed under: amsterdamize, news | Tags: , , ,

Sent in by faithful reader Gabemac:

  • Turn signal biking jacket
    “This tutorial will show you how to build a jacket with turn signals that will let people know where you’re headed when you’re on your bike. We’ll use conductive thread and sewable electronics so your jacket will be soft and wearable and washable when you’re done. Enjoy!”



  • The Big Question: Is Britain really getting on its bike and turning into a nation of cyclists?
    “Why are we asking this now?Because cycling’s time has come – or so it seems from a flurry of initiatives sweeping the country as politicians and planners wake up to what is increasingly seen as the transport of the future.

    So how do we compare with the Continent?
    “Cycling on the Continent is embedded in the culture – in northern European cities, anyway. There are reckoned to be as many bikes as there are people in the Netherlands, and anyone who has visited Amsterdam will know that cycling there is the norm, while car-driving is, relatively speaking, a fringe activity. Road design, and the conduct of drivers, reflects this balance. The bike has priority over the car, whereas in British cities, it remains the other way round. The result is an abiding perception of danger that continues to dissuade people from taking up commuting by bike.”



  • Baby steps for bicycle lanes
  • Bicycle interest on the move
    “Irvin said he even sold bicycles to a couple who plans to abandon their automotive ways. “They were selling their cars and … using that money to buy the bikes.”
  • Not all new customers have gone that far, but Walt’s manager Sarah Ashman said there has been high interest in bikes for commuting to work.”

  • Bicycle lanes: do it right or don’t do it at all
  • Commuters ditching cars for bikes, foot power
    “Those who bicycle say they get benefits beyond just buffeting their budgets from gasoline prices.”It’s the fastest way to get to work. Compared to Muni, it takes half the time,” said Tumlin. “I bike because I can change my route and stop off and run errands and see people along the way. It is great exercise and I find a significant difference in my productivity when I bike to work. I am smarter when I bike. I’m more patient when I bike.”



9 Comments so far
Leave a comment

In the article about cycling in the UK the writer stated that (in Amsterdam) “The bike has priority over the car, whereas in British cities, it remains the other way round.” This is incorrect.
In the UK cars do not have priority over cyclists – it is just that too many drivers THINK they have priority or are simply unaccustomed to sharing the road with cyclists.

Comment by justwilliams

thanks for clearing that up! Certainly a fierce battle against misconception when the national press perpetuates such things.

Comment by amsterdamize

The article about the UK repeats the ‘too chilly’ chestnut. For comparison, the mode share of bicycles is about 20 % in Oulu, Finland. Oulu is at latitude 65 degrees north vs. London’s 51 degrees. Admittedly the Oulu region is dead flat, though.

Comment by Mikko

Mikko, thanks for that, and you’re so right. So often people keep coming up with these assumptions and/or excuses that are mostly irrelevant. I’m not at all surprised by Oulu’s numbers. You know, most of the time it rains in the Netherlands, fall and winter and summers aren’t that great either. By international standards biking then wouldn’t be very popular. On the contrary, it is. Come rain, come shine, we bike. It beats anything else. So you get wet, well, you’ll dry up again too :).

One last point, which is quite ironic, having a flat country doesn’t really mean that biking isn’t possible or desirable in the same way in countries like Austria or Switzerland. Actually, places like Bern etc have the same mode share as Oulu! 🙂

Comment by amsterdamize

I have to agree, for the most part, with the US based articles. It is a slow battle to gain cycling infrastructure. The elephant in the room however is the lack of proper training of motorists (drivers) AND cyclists. I travel extensively as part of my work and get to see the good, the bad and the ugly in cycling and pedestrian infrastructure. For the most part it is non-existent outside of a few core areas. Especially in areas that were developed after the 1950’s. Urban Sprawl at it’s finest.


Comment by 2whls3spds

Aaron, I think you’ll find The Kunstler Cast very interesting.

Comment by amsterdamize

I follow Kunstler, but we need to get the people in charge to pay attention and spend money wisely and NOW. For what has been spent on the Iraq war, we could have built one helluva passenger rail system…


Comment by 2whls3spds

I hear ya, man, I hear ya.

Comment by amsterdamize

Wow, you put a lot of work into this blog. I’m happy with the new format/direction but what you’ve done here is very admirable.

Comment by walkeaglerock

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