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Review: Cycling and Cyclists around the World

Review: Cycling and Cyclists around the World

cyclists-book-coverReview by Santhosh Kodukula, ICLEI

Many cities constantly face the perplexing conundrum “How do we increase our bicycle modal share?” Similarly, people sitting on a motor bike or in their car think cycling is a sport that poor take part in, getting tired cycling to their low paying jobs and bearing the brunt of the hot sun, and once in a while there is a glimpse of a woman cycling in the city. In many cities we do not let our children to even think about riding a bicycle in the city.

“Cycling and Cyclists around the World” addresses the above questions and more. For the first time a book has focussed not just at policy-makers but also at bicycle users, bicycle enthusiasts, activists, and organisations aiming to increase awareness of bicycle use. With examples drawn from personal and work experience from various cities and organisations, 25 reputable experts wrote articles on how to pedal our cities and ourselves forward.

Examples range from both the corners of the world. Authors from Portland, OR, talk about their experience in creating “the” bicycling city in a heavily car dependent country, while experts from Latin America talk about the long investments and trust in bicycle oriented infrastructure which led to an increase in bicycle use. Examples from Amsterdam, a city where most of the people own more than one bicycle; and Copenhagen, a city that has included cycling at the forefront of their Zero emissions plan; show that the only way to solve the cycling conundrum is to not deliberate but to deliver proper cycling infrastructure. Experts point out that many of our cities think about doing things right rather than doing right things. Examples from India discuss the reasons why we seldom find female cyclists in cities and examples from China show the efforts made by Guangzhou in maintaining its bicycle shares.

This book highlights, how highways can also be developed fro bicycles and how cycling can also be used for transporting cargo. Cities can embark on their cycling experience through public bike systems and promote cycling through awareness raising and stakeholder involvement activities. Marketing cycling in cities has its own article in this book, which gives cities tips on how to promote cycling.

Overall, this book is suitable for city officials, cyclists, cycling enthusiasts and want-to-be cyclists wondering how to pedal forward.

To order the book click here.