It cant be true!!
That guy in the article is wearing a helmet!!
I guess you have some sort of point there? Sydney also has bikeways and they are increasing the modal share which is a good thing.
Konadog are you in Vancouver? I know that BC has MHLs - how is the bike share scheme going? I know that there was a lot of talk about getting it up before the Velo-City conference which I guess has fallen by the wayside. It seems that many had doubts as to whether it would work with MHLs. Do you know anything about it?
I'm on Vancouver Island and have a 2 hour drive and a 2 hour ferry ride to get me to the city of Vancouver (aka The Big Smoke). Not sure about the levels of enforcement in Vancouver, but here (small town) and in Victoria (biggest city on the Island at about 250,000), the two places I ride the most, the MHL is irrelevant and unenforced. I bet there is a huge proportion of the population that is totally unaware it even exists...
As far as I'm aware the bike sharing plan hasn't gone anywhere.
Looks like they're doing good things with bike lanes though!
Interesting to note how the article points out that women cycling are an indicator of safety - that is more women as an overall percentage indicates a safer place to cycle.
Following on that - I'm in the habit of challenging people at work to get on their bike. The women invariably cite safety, the men are more laid back and most cheerfully admit they're too bloody lazy.
Ross, re women cycling an indicator of safety
Getting people out of cars and onto bicycles, a much more sustainable form of transportation, has long vexed environmentally conscious city planners. Although bike lanes painted on streets and automobile-free ‘greenways’ have increased ridership over the past few years, the share of people relying on bikes for transportation is still less than 2 percent, based on various studies. An emerging body of research suggests that a superior strategy to increase pedal pushing could be had by asking the perennial question: What do women want?
In the US, men’s cycling trips surpass women’s by at least 2:1. This ratio stands in marked contrast to cycling in European countries, where urban biking is a way of life and draws about as many women as men – sometimes more. In the Netherlands, where 27 percent of all trips are made by bike, 55 percent of all riders are women. In Germany 12 percent of all trips are on bikes, 49 percent of which are made by women.
“If you want to know if an urban environment supports cycling, you can forget about all the detailed ‘bikeability indexes’ – just measure the proportion of cyclists who are female”, says Jan Garrard, a senior lecturer at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia, and author of several studies on biking and gender differences.
Women are considered an ‘indicator species’ for bike-friendly cities for several reasons. First, studies across disciplines as disparate as criminology and child-rearing have shown that women are more averse to risk than men. In the cycling arena, that risk aversion translates into increased demand for safe bike infrastructure as a prerequisite for riding. Women also do most of the child care and household shopping, which means these bike routes need to be organised around practical urban destinations to make a difference.
“Despite our hope that gender roles do not exist, they still do,” says Jennifer Dill, a transportation and planning researcher at Portland State University. Addressing women’s concerns about safety and utility “will go a long way” toward increasing the number of people on two wheels, Dill explains.
So far few cities have taken on the challenge. In the US, most cycling facilities consist of on-street bike lanes, which require riding in vehicle-clogged traffic, notes John Pucher, a professor of urban planning at Rutgers University and longtime bike scholar. And when cities do install traffic-protected off-street bike paths, they are almost always along rivers and parks rather than along routes leading “to the supermarket, the school, the day care centre”, Pucher says.
Although researchers have long examined the bike infrastructure in Europe, they have only just started to do so for the US. In a study conducted last year, Dill examined the effect of different types of bike facilities on cycling. The project, which used GPS positioning to record individual cycling trips in Portland, compared the shortest route with the path cyclists actually took to their destination. Women were less likely than men to try on-street bike lanes and more likely to go out of their way to use ‘bike boulevards’, quiet residential streets with special traffic-calming features for bicycles. “Women diverted from the shortest routes more often”, Dill says.
Other data support those findings. In New York City, men are three times as likely to be cyclists as women. Yet a bicycle count found that an off-street bike path in Central Park had 44 percent female riders. “Within the same city you find huge deviations in terms of gender”, Pucher remarks.
Heather, Jan Garrard has also been part of the push to get legislative changes made in Victoria to have dooring classified as a more serious offence:-
Oh Richard, there's me thinking they must all be anti-helmet ;-)
:) Gillian, you probably recall my posts that multiple surveys state lack of safety.
Thanks Heather but you are preaching to the converted on the safety front. Last time I looked I was a sensible female :)
Gillian, actually stating the reason why I am amused at your tongue-in-cheek comment.
I've just done a survey of the all the females in my household and it seems not safety, or even helmet hair, is the reason for not cycling, it hills.
A sample survey of 1.