December 6, 2010

Green Highways?

photo: conor o'brien
Ok, I have to admit, I'm pretty bored at this stage hearing the same thing over and over again about how hydrogen and electric cars are going to change our lives forever. It's not that I'm skeptical, because I'm not, but move on people, these technologies need to be mainstreamed. In the meantime we have to fill the gap. How do we make our existing highways into green highways?

Biking Meets Carbon Offsetting

Bike sharing / Carbon Offsetting can be the future according to this nice little ditt from CityRyde Inspire. B-Cycle in the United States is already implementing the first generation of smart bikes which can track your carbon offsets from an on-board computer. I love the way they say European-style bike sharing scheme! Come on guys, we got ourselves a stat lovin'American-style bike sharing scheme on the cards here. Nice work Denver.

December 5, 2010

Amsterdam Street Art

Thanks Pim for sharing this photo with the world!

New Bicycle Path, LISBOA

© João Silveira Ramos
Here is a wonderful project with the promotion of urban cycling at its core, while at the same time improving the quality of urban space along the river banks of the Tagus in Lisboa. The remarkable thing about this project is the minimal interventions used, no expensive paving here, just a really nice graphic language deployed onto urban surfaces. I can't help but be reminded on Caruso St. John's wonderful Bankside Directional Signage System in London. Simple, Everyday Urbanism.

November 30, 2010

Speed Camera Lottery

Who knew reducing speed in urban areas, and consequently improving the quality of the urban environment could be, well, fun?

November 26, 2010

History of Cycle Paths in the Netherlands

Interesting video detailing the evolution of Cycle Paths in the Netherlands.

More info: A view from a Cycle Path

November 11, 2010

China: The (lost) Kingdom Of Bicycles?

According to Wang Fuchang, the Chinese director of the Department of Equipment Industry under the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, "it is estimated that automobile ownership in China will exceed 200 million in 2020, causing serious energy security and environmental issues." Currently, there is a year on year increase of approximately 30% in private car numbers.

November 7, 2010

Urban Mobility Beyond Cars: Dublin

Ecological Urbanism is delighted to announce that my research proposal 'Urban Mobility Beyond Cars" has recently been shortlisted for a research competition organised by the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland. The competition,
3Twenty10, was a call for Irish Architects to identify solutions to the challenges facing Ireland’s built environment in the aftermath of the boom years. It explores how the profession can contribute to the wider debate about national recovery.

November 1, 2010

Reclaiming car parking spaces with bike racks

one car parking space can park up to 14 bicycles.

Copenhagen has been stealthy and steadily with it's bicycle revolution. One of the city's central policies in bringing about the huge transformation towards the world's no. 1 cycle city status has been the slow removal of car parking spaces in the city centre over the last 30 years, a policy promoted by renowned Danish architect, Jan Gehl. With 2% of the city's on street car parking removed every year, the citizens don't notice this happening, according to Gehl.

October 31, 2010

Transport Innovations in China

Breaking High-Speed Train Speed records, Planning routes to Europe, and the development of radical new concepts for futuristic urban trains, China is trailblazing its way to the top of the race to build low carbon alternatives to air transport. Here are some recent developments on transport innovation in China.

October 25, 2010

Vintage Velo

And in I went to Velo to get my bicycle fixed and there they did give me this beauty of a replacement bicycle, lucky number 7, and what a looker she is! Must be a classic dame... strong, elegant and handy. Pre-cursor to the brompton? Possible. Is she a former mistress to Belgian grandfathers? Before anyone was mentioning jargon such as 'intermodality' and 'sustainable cities', was this one being riden to the train station, taken aboard and then onto the eventual destination? A total transit solution for the 1950's?

August 19, 2010

Transit Score

San Francisco Transit Heat Map
Covering more than 40 US cities, Transit Score is a web utility that assesses how well a neighbourhood is served by public transport. Transit Scores are based on schedule data released in a standard format by public transit agencies. To calculate a Transit Score, assign a "usefulness" value to nearby transit routes based on the frequency, type of route (rail, bus, etc.), and distance to the nearest stop on the route. The "usefulness" of all nearby routes is summed and they normalize this to a score between 0 - 100.

August 17, 2010

Populist Proof: Commuting is bad for you

Americans with longer commutes suffer higher levels of back pain, higher cholesterol, and higher levels of obesity.

After surveying 173,581 employed Americans over the past year, a recent Gallup-Healthway's survey has concluded that American workers with lengthy commutes are more likely to report a range of adverse physical and emotional conditions, leading to lower overall scores on the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index.

August 16, 2010

Polluted Air

Graph by Martha Klang McGill
Urban Pollution has a major impact on the health of cities' populations and is also a good indicator to the level of combustible engine congestion on the city's road network. Of course, there are issues of industrial activity in the city and also the local climate, but there is no doubt that more focus on a sustainable transport network based on clean energy sources can dramatically improve the air quality of cities such as LA and Houston, Texas.

Does Driving make Americans Fat?

Following on from the issue of the correlation between obesity rates and commuting by car raised in a previous post, Transportation is a Public Health Issue, Good have created this fantastic graphic illustrating the breakdown of the modal share of commuters in the US, state by state.

High Speed Rail in the USA

Promising signs are coming from the United States that the country who gave the world the post-war car-dependent suburban dream is finally dreaming about a future based on sustainable development practices and with high-speed rail at the core. The exhibition invites locals and visitors alike to discover new ideas for establishing sustainable public transportation in LA.

August 13, 2010


"A gap in the agreed order of the city"

After covering design ideas for Chicago's derelict Bloomingdale Line, EcoUrb presents the second installment of our Rail[ways] series where we will be looking at Le Viaduc des Arts in Central Paris, a project widely regarded as an inspiration for the adaptation of many railway lines worldwide, most notably, the recently completed Highline in New York.

August 12, 2010

10 principles for livable transportation

Last week, the Institute of Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP) released 'Our Cities Ourselves: 10 Principles for Transport in Urban Life', a publication co-authored by Jan Gehl outlining “ten keys to building successful cities” and “show[ing] how cities from New York to Nairobi can meet the challenges of rapid population growth and climate change while improving their competitiveness.”

August 11, 2010

Dublin Pedal Project

Presenting the 'Pedal Project',  a three part absolutely fantastic documentary series from Dublin City TV. The Pedal project is not a documentary – it is an ongoing debate emerging into public view in all its complexity and variety for the first time.

August 10, 2010

Manchester Velodrome

image: Peter Stephens Photography
Recently, I was lucky to get a chance to cycle around the track at the Manchester Velodrome. While I have seen a few races on tv, it was the first time I have been inside the National Cycling Centre in East Manchester. In fact to be honest, it was the first time I was ever in a velodrome. With a trusty fixed gear bike rented from the center, cycling around the track was a truly exhilarating experience. That said, it did take a bit of getting used to and was somewhat disconcerting at the beginning to do a lap of the track without the need for turning the handlebars!


DEPDC, a non-profit community based NGO working in Thailand on the prevention side of the trafficking of women and children into the sex industry or other exploitative child labour situations, is currently fundraising to provide bicycles as a means of transport to the many children attending it's schools in rural Northern Thailand.

The Cities of China

image: chinographics
It is often quite difficult to come to terms with the scale of China, it's continuing growth and the mass urbanization of it's population. The graph above, created by Chinographics, is a fantastic resource to come to grips with the country's  60 cities with a population of 1million or more. In comparison to this, Europe has just 35 cities with a population of 1 million or more.

And the numbers are only growing. According to the McKinsey Global Institute, Chinese cities are expected to add more than 350 million people by 2030 - that's the entire population of the United States today - which will bring their urban-dwelling population to more than a billion. By then, China will have more than 220 cities with populations of more than a million, and 24 megacities with more than five million inhabitants.

More at worldchanging

August 4, 2010

FIAT 500 Fold-Up

Folding bicycle made by Compagnia Ducale exclusively for Fiat, designed to fit in the boot of the Fiat 500

Roll up..Roll up, first Peugeot, then Honda and VW followed in quick pursuit and now FIAT has become the latest car manufacturer to roll out it's 'personal mobility device' to accompany it's dinky 500. What sets FIAT apart is that this is not a futuristic hovercraft that sounds like a vacum cleaner, ala Honda, nor is it an electric vehicle made to resemble what Megatron would cycle at the weekends, ala Peugeot, but just a plain old fashioned fold-up push bicycle. This clever device is designed to fit the spaciously challenged rear boot of the 500 and it has dashing looks to match the car's classic styling.

Brussels Central Station Bicycle Flash M....usical!

The first choir flash mob: singing, trial bike & beat box. All together, to promote a good cause, a bicycle event for 11.11.11, a non-profit who fights for a fairer world without poverty.

July 22, 2010

Transportation is a public health issue

Percent of Obese (BMI > 30) in U.S. Adults
A recent report here in Ireland revealed that in over 55% of pregnant women giving birth last year at one of the primary maternity hospitals in the country were overweight (43%) or clinically obese (13%). Hot on the heels of these shocking statistics we are looking at the correlation of public health and tranport, something that the United States in only getting to grips with in recent years.

In the United States of Obesity, transportation is a public health issue. As profiled in the recently released report from the Trust for America's Health, "F as in Fat", obesity rates continue to rise across the US, increasing the risk of serious health problems like diabetes and hypertension. To solve the obesity epidemic, the data suggest, Americans need to rethink their dependence on the automobile.

July 19, 2010

Designated Driving

Last week, we had an terrible tragedy in Ireland with the loss of 8 people in a head-on collision on the Inisowen peninsula in Northern Donegal. While it appears that the driver may have been driving too fast, what was even more worrying was that 7 out of the 8 young men who piled into that one car were killed instantly, with just the driver surviving. They had been watching the world cup final in a local pub after which they took, seemingly the wise decision to leave their cars at the pub and take a lift home. However, in the seemingly absence of an adequate taxi service, what are the alternatives? How could this tragedy have been avoided, and more importantly, not repeated in the future? Below are some examples of successful companies based in urban centers in the UK and the US who are offering an alternative service; the chauffeur driver who drives you and your car home.

July 16, 2010

Cycling Copenhagen, Through North American Eyes

This is a fantastic video made by Clarence Eckerson, Jr. from The video, filmed in Copenhagen during the recent Velo-City 2010 conference, documents the reflections on Copenhagen's cycling culture from various North American cycling advocates.

In my opinion, I dislike the way Copenhageners go on about their city being 'the best cycle city in the world'. It's an attitude that buys into this madness whereby every city needs a tagline, needs to be #1 at something....anything. For example, Dublin at the moment in preparing a bid to become the World Design Capital in 2013. Now I visited Helsinki last summer, which will be World Design Capital in 2012, and it has a huge design history and even a design district in the city centre. Dublin has none of this and I don't understand why it would want to become World Design Capital only other than for the sake of the title.

So, in conclusion, I believe that what we need to do is think about smart cities. How smart is my city? What is my city's equivalent to an IQ? A smart city is one that combines the three i's; intellect integrated with infrastructure. Yes, Copenhagen is a super smart city and yes please tell us about how super smart you are, because you know what, we all can't be the world's best cycle city so stop telling us you are.

July 12, 2010

Bicycle Cargo

July 9, 2010

Copenhagen Cycling Superhighways

This is a great news video from's series on 'Urban Mobility- Rethinking Transportation in an Urban Environment.

Voted the world's most livable city in 2008, Copenhagen embraces bicycle culture as part of daily life with nearly 40 % of residents riding a bike to work. Blogs and fashion photos are dedicated to bike style, and throughout the city you'll find bicycle bars on sidewalks so riders can rest their feet; green lights that change early for cyclists; and even friendly signs greeting "Hi Cyclist!"

It's no wonder then that Copenhagen is innovating new ways of creating a bike-friendly city with a system of as many as 15 extra-wide, segregated bike routes connecting the suburbs to the center of the city. Technological advances will soon follow, so commuters can detect other riders on the routes, and help them to assemble into pelotons or "bike buses." These groups could in turn emit signals that trip traffic lights in their favor, resulting in a "green wave" of bicycle momentum.

July 8, 2010

Airborne Personal Mobility Innovation

On the dawn after the first night-flight of a solar plane, we've decided to take a look at the innovative concepts currently in development by Nasa and others. With real life working flying cars and jetpacks, for anyone thats a fan of The Jetsons or Rocketeer, this one is definitely for you!

July 7, 2010

Chicago Cycle Culture

Lone cyclist passes Buckingham Fountain in Grant Park.

July 6, 2010

Piano Stairs

”Take the stairs instead of the escalator or elevator and feel better” is something we often hear or read in the Sunday papers. Few people actually follow that advice. This Fun Theory initiative answers the question, Can we get more people to take the stairs over the escalator by making it fun to do? Yes we can! Lets make the stairs a giant piano and see what happens!

Rewarding Speed Limit Signs

Above is a video from Kevin Richardson (USA) who was the fun theory award winner for 2009/2010 with his initiative 'Rewarding Speed Limit Signs'. The initiative answers the question, how can we get more people to obey the speed limit by making it fun to do? The idea here is capture on camera the people who keep to the speed limit. They would have their photos taken and registration numbers recorded and entered into a lottery. Winners would recieve cash prizes and be notified by post. Better still, the winnig pot would come from the people who were caught speeding.

Subway slide

Here’s a cool video of a Berlin subway staircase that was transformed into a slide. Watch it above.

IBM conducts Commuter Pain Survey

“If all the cars in the United States were placed end to end, it would probably be Labor Day Weekend.”
- Doug Larson

The index is comprised of 10 issues: 1) commuting time, 2) time stuck in traffic, agreement that: 3) price of gas is already too high, 4) traffic has gotten worse, 5) start-stop traffic is a problem, 6) driving causes stress, 7) driving causes anger, 8) traffic affects work, 9) traffic so bad driving stopped, and 10) decided not to make trip due to traffic.

IBM conducted a survey of adult drivers in twenty major cities around the world – repeating similar surveys done in the U.S. alone in May 2008 and August 2009. This survey, intended to gather drivers’ opinions about local traffic and related issues, was conducted in native languages in Amsterdam, Beijing, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Houston, Johannesburg, Los Angeles, London, Madrid, Melbourne, Mexico City, Milan, Moscow, Montreal, New Delhi, New York, Paris, Sao Paulo, Stockholm and Toronto.There were 8,192 responses in the final data set – at least 400 from each city.

June 30, 2010

Adaptive Re-use of store bicycles

IIT Master of Architecture student Matt Moore was a finalist in the WPA 2.0 student competition with this innovative re-use of car panels for bike sheds. Of course, the double entendre is more about the decline of the era of the automobile, and the return of the bicycle. It is interesting to note that Chicago still has yet to adopt a public bicycle scheme similar to Paris's Vélib and many other successful schemes in Europe and now in the United States. It is really such a shame as the city has the 2nd largest public transit infrastructure in the US. Also, the Loop offers extremely high densities particularly in the office sector, so such a service would surely be appreciated, especially with car parking being at a premium.

June 29, 2010

Bike Assembly Station at Portland Airport

This bike assembly station at Portland airport is a fantastic innovation and much needed in airports worldwide. A friend who recently brought their bike from Dublin to Chicago told me that the facilities in Dublin Airport are non-existent for cyclists. Bicycles must be boxed or bagged and passengers are advised to remove the front wheel and secure it to the frame, lower the handlebars and saddle and place in line with the frame and invert the pedals. However the airport does not offer passengers any facilites to box, bag or adjust your bicycle.

Bicycles Attack!

Bruce Mau: Designing the Future

photo: noel hidalgo
Last week I was privileged to be in the presence of a truly great mind, Bruce Mau. The man who, over 15 years ago, brought use S,M,L,XL presented to the TN2020 summit his design philosophy, ecology of methods and some fascinating results. Now based in Chicago, Bruce Mau is the Chief Creative Officer of Bruce Mau Design, author and publisher of many award-winning books and widely regarded as a visionary and world-leading innovator.

June 4, 2010

Honda's U3-X Unicycle

Yet another new Personal Mobility Device that promises to change the world! I have to admit, taking the vaccum cleaner noise away, this invention is pretty darn nifty. For over a decade now Honda, 'The Power of Dreams' have been busily working away on developing their mechtronic and robot technologies. 'Asimo' the robot, and more recently the bionic exo-skeleton, the Honda 'Assist' have been major leaps forward in the development of robot technology. Honda is consistently, as it says so itself, "tapping progress on the shoulders and saying....more forwards please".

May 30, 2010

Empty L.A.

David Engwicht:The Art of Placemaking

On Friday, I had the wonderful opportunity to speak with David Engwicht, and hear not one but two fantastic presentations delivered by the Australian Urban Philosopher. The earlier presentation encouraged everybody attending to use the power of story to deliver the future you want. The latter presentation entitled ‘Placemaking’ and arranged by Dublin City Council, attracted a huge crowd to its new wood quay venue despite its Friday night scheduling.

In his lecture, David outlined the lessons he has learned throughout his career of successful placemaking from around the world. In what was a highly interactive lecture, he began the night by asking the crowd ‘What makes you feel at home?’. Noticing that there were architects in the crowd (they’re easy to spot, just look for anyone dressed in black) he proclaimed “the sense of home is the inverse proportion of the amount of money you can spend on it”. He asks, what invokes a sense of home? Does a swish contemporary pad with clean lines and polished floors, or does a ramshackle house with some odd bits and bobs strewn about the place? His point was that poor people furnish their house with a sense of generosity that gives a spirit to the place.

May 26, 2010


As part of the Convergence Sustainable Festival currently running in Dublin, one of the world's most innovate Urban Thinkers, David Engwicht will share his ideas on developing a creative city. Artist, author and street philosopher, David will present what it takes he believes for a city to become a creative city and why every resident has the power to make their city a place that nurtures the creativity of its residents.

RAIL[WAYS] Series: Chicago's Bloomingdale Line

Over the next few weeks here at ecocity we will be documenting urban projects from around the world that transform redundant railway lines into leisure amenities. Often physical and social barriers in cities, redundant railway viaducts have the potential to bind communities together and create social cohesion in often very difficult neighbourhoods. Also being examined is how exactly the projects develop from conception through to completion; many of which are realized due to the hard work of volunteer community organisations with the courage and conviction to pursue what they passionately believe in.

Retrofitting existing cities infrastructure is a strategy widely accepted as one that can deliver low carbon cities quickly and at a low cost. In fact, Retrofitting cities is one of the key components of 'The Future We Want' project that I was introduced to by Bill Becker back in Copenhagen in December '09 at the Culture|Futures conference. Bill is an hugely enthusiastic and inspiring guy with great resolve from the University of Colorado, Denver and is the executive director of Obama's Presidential Climate Action Project.

May 25, 2010

First the Bug, now the Bik.e

After Peugeot's recent foray into the concept bike market, Volkswagen now has thrown its hat into the ring recently unveiling a concept electric folding bike. At the recent Auto China show, VW research and development chief Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg introduced the world to the VW bik.e in a move that extends the company's "focus on mobility" beyond just automobiles.

May 24, 2010

Reclaiming the Banks of the Seine

Port de Solferino - left bank © Apur / JC Chobelet

Paris mayor Bertrand Delanoë - who introduced Paris-Plages, when the banks of the Seine become a temporary beach every summer - said that removing cars all year round from sections of the riverbank would help cut pollution and boost the capital's international standing.
Up to 70,000 cars travel daily along the Seine's left bank and what is known as the Pompidou expressway – a dual carriageway along the right bank built in 1967 by Mr Pompidou , an avid motorist who declared: "The French love their cars". The banks have been UNESCO world heritage sites since 1992.

May 21, 2010

Building a Cycling Culture: Dave Horton

Yesterday evening I attended the annual Dublin Cycling Campaign lecture. Dr. Horton is a sociologist working with the Lancaster Environment Center at Lancaster University. Ronnie Delvin from the Department of Transport opened proceedings with an encouraging message that it is the aim of the National Cycle Policy Framework to achieve a vibrant cycle culture in Ireland by 2020. He also iterated the role of cycling campaigners to get out there and spread the message to the public, a message not only that cycling is reliable, healthy and vigorously pursued as government policy, but most importantly, that cycling is fun and for everyone.

Dr. Horton carried out his phD in exploring cycling role in creating subcultures. From feminism at the end of the 19th century, through to socialism at the turn of the 20th century, and on to anarchism and environmentalism, cycling has played a crucial role in the defining of these identities. However Dr. Horton was not in Dublin to talk about his phD but rather to propose the argument that in order to promote cycling to the levels desired, there needs to be a democratization of cycling, a shift to cycling as a dominant culture. The message of the lecture was that in order to acheive this goal, policy makers and society need to move from provision for cycling, via the promotion of cycling, to the production of cycling.

May 18, 2010

Zimride is Carpooling 2.0

Self-touted as reliable, affordable and more sustainable travel, Zimride is redefining the way we think of carpooling. The service that utilises social networking has expanded rapidly in universities in the U.S. and has started to capture the attention on Corporate America, attracting the likes of Wal-mart and Cigna to using the service.

May 17, 2010

dublinbikes, probably the best bike sharing system in the world?

In existence for just under a year, Dublin City Council have recently announced that 'dublinbikes', the city's public bikes scheme is 'the most successful in the world by any measure'. With over 20,000 Dubliners signed up already to the annual membership, on average there are 47 long term members per bike, with each bike used on average 9.9 times a day.

May 12, 2010

Reinventing the Wheel

Photo courtesy of Max Tomasinelli
As reported here at ecocity back in December at the COP15, MIT's 'SENSEABLE City Lab' launched the revolutionary 'Copenhagen Wheel', a simple, low-cost bicycle wheel that can convert any bicycle into an e-bike. Our friends over at's Urban Mobility channel have recently created a great litle video about this ground breaking innovation, interviewing some of the designers involved.

April 28, 2010

Cyclize your city

Image by Daniel Peeters
As part of this years National Bike Week is a photoshop mash-up competition that wants to see interpretations of how Ireland's citys would look ‘Cyclized’. Think the M50: just bikes. The N17: cyclists have taken over. Patrick Street: bike zone only. Imagine the streets of Belfast, the stone walled roads of Galway and your city's quays taken over by the motor car's greatest rival: Man and his bicycle.

The winner will receive EUR1,000 and the opportunity to see their work used in a nationwide campaign promoting the development of cyclized cities in Ireland. The winner along with 20 of other entries will be displayed as part of a 'Cyclised' art show in Gallery Number One for the duration of Bike Week where the winner will be announced on the 17th of June at an evening award ceremony. The show wil then travel around Ireland to help with the nationwide cycling awareness campaign.The winning entry will be on public display on a variety of billboards throughout Dublin city for three weeks after Bike Week finishes on the 20th of June.

April 19, 2010

Passengers buy bikes for ferry

Great Story via the Irish Times

A British businessman stranded in France said he was had to buy a women’s bicycle to board a ferry in a bid to get home.

Tom Noble (52) from Highgate in north London, said ferry operator Norfolkline had no foot passenger tickets left and would only allow him to make the journey if he was a genuine cyclist.

The managing director said ferry staff at Dunkirk even made him ride the “rustic” contraption, which he had just bought from a second-hand shop, up the ramp.

In fact, half a dozen people grounded by the volcanic ash had the same idea, and boarded the boat in a wobbling parade of two-wheelers.

One man, a British Airways gold card member, was riding a children’s bicycle.

April 16, 2010

Cycling in Dublin

On RTÉ last night was an excellent programme featuring the lives of Dublin's cyclists and also recent developments in Dublin's cycling culture and infrastructure. The show features Dublin's Bike Couriers, Commuters, and introduces the Bike to Work Scheme, Dublin's Cycle Routes and also the Dublin Bikes scheme.

Watch the show online here.

The Future Of Urban Mobility

Keep an eye on for more videos over the next while and remember that the future is mobilized.....

April 15, 2010

Bikes not Bombs

Bikes Not Bombs has sent over 37,000 bikes to Central America, the Caribbean and Africa (and New Orleans) in the last 24 years. They do more than just speak about the social and environmental costs of increasing global motorization - They provide technical and material resources for transportation alternatives.

next generation electric bikes

Winner of an International Forum of Design award, the HMK 561 prototype pushes the limits of bicycle design. German Designer Ralf Kittmann has re-defined the function of the bicycle frame by allowing the one-piece carbon-fibre frame to distribute power from the motor without wires.

Built-in to the design are also some other fantastic features such as regenerative brakes that convert the heat energy from braking into electricity and in-built lights powered by the motor. We are led to believe that the frame is covered with a variety of isolated fibres that run parallel to each other and act as capacitors storing electricity for the bike, although I have my doubts on that one. The most important aspect of this bike is its aesthetic appeal, it just screams sci-fi chic and from now on is to be referred as the Luke Skywalker.

April 14, 2010

Electric Cars in Ireland

Selection of electric cars available from Renault
In an announcement by Minister Eamon Ryan yesterday, Ireland has set a goal to have 10% of all vehicles in the country running on electricity by 2020. The country is to become a test bed for the roll-out of electric vehicles and in an effort to get people to make the switch to electric, the public will receive a €5,000 grant towards the purchase of a new electric car. On top of this, electric cars will not have to pay vehicle registration tax. The grant will make the electric cars comparable in price to their combustion counterparts, but the real plus is tat they will run at 20% of the cost of a conventional car.

April 13, 2010

Yikes! Here comes the YikeBike

This innovation in urban transportation is definitely pre-destined to end up in the scrapheap of outrageous designs that people regard as simply a step too far. I mean, whats wrong with the bicycle, or even the electrically assisted bicycle? Segway's aren't cool, YikeBike is definitely not cool.

March 30, 2010

Biking & Google Maps

Google have started to add bicycle routes in cities across the US to their maps application. This is a fantastic innovation in my opinion and can be used to further promote cycling, whether it be touring or simply urban biking. With safety a major issue when it comes to biking, decent maps showing the classifications of bicycle routes can be used as a tool to highlight accident black spots and pressurize local councils to upgrade many of the substandard infrastructure for biking.

February 22, 2010

Innovative Bicycle Storage Solutions from Andrew Lang

Andrew Lang, designer of Cycloc Photograph: Luke Hayes/
"Bicycles no longer need to clutter entryways." Time Magazine

The theory that states that the simplest ideas are the best is proved in spades by the Cycloc – the brainchild of product and industrial designer Andrew Lang. That's not to undervalue its genius, which delivers a practical solution with an injection of edgy art installation style. So, what exactly is it? Put simply, the device is a cycle storage solution that dexterously solves the problem of bike storage in confined spaces.

February 19, 2010

Seoul Transforms Freeway Into a River (Video)

Cheonggyecheon stream in downtown Seoul

Below is an excellent 5 minute video from Fast Company describing why in 2003, city officials in Seoul decided to demolish a two-storey freeway feeding directly into the centre of the city...and replace it with a stream. I actually visited Cheonggyecheon when I was in Seoul last year and the river had seems like it was always there, and in fact it was. The demolished thoroughfare was built above the site of an ancient stream.

February 18, 2010

Copenhagen by Bicycle Exhibition

Postcard from 1950's entitled "Bicycle Traffic in Rush Hour"

We all know that Copenhagen is the best cycling city in the world, but what is the history behind its vibrant culture? Following on from the 1937 travel video of Copenhagen reported last year, here is some images from the 'Copenhagen by bicycle' exhibition currently running at the Museum of Copenhagen.