Bike sharing systems are meant to make simple and practical transportation options available to more people, but rates of ridership among low-income users is incredibly low. According to Transportation Alternatives, only 0.5 percent of riders on New York’s CitiBike system are categorized as low-income.
[It] may have something do with where the docking stations are located. But the people who run these systems say they’re businesses. And they have to start where the demand for cycling is greatest. Paul DeMaio is a consultant who worked with Capital Bike Share in Washington, D.C.
Systems are forced to go for the low-hanging fruit — the neighborhoods that have the highest density of commercial, of residential. And that are gonna provide the most ridership to help pay for the service. And then hopefully catch up with the outlying neighborhoods as quickly as they can.
But it’s more than just location. Even when these stations are sited in low-income neighborhoods, they often go under-used. Partly, this may be about price. A typical bike-sharing membership costs somewhere between $60 and $100 a year. Many of these systems offer discounts for low-income riders, but they’re not always well-known or advertised.
We received this wonderful contribution today from filmmaker Brandon Neubert. Here he describes it in his own words:
My mother is an amazing woman. Because some back problems, she never found the athletic freedom she wanted until she discovered mankind’s greatest machine: The Bicycle. The Bicycle is the epitome of freedom in her life. One day I received a letter from her, describing her experiences out on her bicycle during the magical time of autumn. It touched me very much. I saved it for two years cherishing it and having the desire to share her same experience with others through film. I was finally able to make that dream a reality. She is the voice behind both the narration and the music, and is our showcased cyclist. Like her, I too love this time of year. I call it “The Quiet Season”. I hope this message touches you the same way it touched me. This video is dedicated to her.
Icy Bike Winter Commuting Challenge is not designed to be a competition, more a challenge to those willing to put on some gloves and shoe covers, get out there to show what you’re made of and keep the pedals turning through the winter. Bicycle commute to work 52 times between October 1 and March 31 and not only will you’ve earned badass status, you can attend the Icy Bike Gala. Join the Facebook group to track your progress.
ChainRing Films has even made a short film about the experience, A Winter of Cyclists. Watch the trailer here.Tweet Print
If you ride in our nation’s capital, you may have noticed some friendly messages popping up in the city’s extensive bike lane network:
MORE BIKE LANES
THANK YOU FOR BIKING
But who was creating these tags? Were they street art or vandalism?
The bright, encouraging—twee, if you’d like—tone of BA’s stencil art has a purpose. “We want more people to bike,” she says. “We want bicyclists to smile and know they’re appreciated. We want bicyclists to smile at other bicyclists and road users. Most importantly, we want D.C. to be a safe place to ride a bike.”
The City Paper chats with the artists, and looks at how the rapid rise in popularity of cycling in the city has had its growing pains.Tweet Print
The Co-Motion Divide’s rugged looking frame is hand-built in Oregon using oversized Reynolds 725 chromoly tubing. Co-Motion’s tandem expertise is evident in the massive chainstays and the 40-spoke wheels, built using DT-Swiss 540 tandem hubs (with 145mm rear spacing for a dishless wheel) and Velocity Cliffhanger rims. The stout 44 mm-diameter head tube on the Divide is another clue that this bike means business.
The Divide rode like it meant business, too. As soon as I got her built, I zipped through the mean streets and hit the local trails. The bike felt incredibly stiff and well built. I took that as an encouraging sign for the loaded tour that lay ahead—a 355-mile self-supported tour along the unpaved Great Allegheny Passage and C&O Canal Towpath from Pittsburgh to Washington, D.C.Tweet Print
I’m not sure what a lorry is, but it sure looks a lot like a truck. All kidding aside, in this video from the Greater London Metropolitan Police, a local cyclist and a driver explain how each can take better steps to avoid crashes. They then take turns in each others’ place to see just how dangerous riding near one of these vehicles can be if you’re not visible. After the rash of incidents in London recently, hopefully it can help save some lives.Tweet Print
Via ZipmentsTweet Print
Photos by Dave Schlabowske
Sleigh bells were ringing as hundreds of riders decked out in holiday cheer swarmed the streets of Milwaukee last week for the annual Santa Cycle Rampage.
Traditionally not much more than a pub crawl, some of the restaurants along the route took it upon themselves to donate a portion of the profits to the Wisconsin Bicycle Fed. Lowlands Group Restaurants event even brewed up a special Santa Rampage Belgian Bier. Lakefront Brewery offered up free beer. And Great Lakes Distillery donated $1 for every drink sold.
If you missed out on the action you can read about it and see more photos at wisconsinbikefed.org.
One of the fastest growing sectors of the mobile-app driven economy is delivery. You can get anything delivered these days. A car to pick you up, groceries from your local store, even the “green” economy is getting in on it.
All these deliveries have one thing in common though: they need couriers. New apps like Postmates are heavily dependent on couriers – on foot, on a scooter, but especially on a bike. Need some office supplies, a latte and a birthday card to send to mom? Fire up the app and a “postmate” will gather up your items and deliver them for a small fee in under an hour.
Right now the service is only available in a few major cities, but if it sees success like the car-share app Uber, it will likely be spreading soon. You can apply to be a bike courier now and earn a share of the delivery fee and 100 percent of the tips.
Have you tried any of these delivery apps? What has been your experience?
Martyn Ashton’s first Road Bike Party video was a huge internet sensation, with the trials legend doing things on a road bike that no one had ever seen. The sequel had to be bigger and better, and it doesn’t disappoint.Tweet Print