Posted by Michael Andersen (News Editor) on January 13th, 2014 at 9:41 am
The bike links from around the world that caught our eyes this week were even richer than usual. Enjoy the feast.
Windshield negativity: If you’ve ever struggled to understand how different people can have such wildly different views of urban life, a new UK study might help: when we see something from inside a moving car, we tend to perceive it to be more negative than if we see exactly the same thing from the perspective of someone moving in a bus, on a bike or on the sidwalk.
“Like a woman needs a bicycle”: Local poet Meg Brennan has written a beautiful essay about moving to Portland and falling slowly into love with biking.
Self-powered bike lights: Ten days into an already-successful Kickstart, the Magnic Light iC adds a microprocessor and steady light to the battery-free contactless wheel-powered bike lights created last year. $69 each.
We did not make this up: A scientific study in England concluded that “cyclists are considered to be 13 per cent more intelligent and ‘cooler’ and ten per cent more charitable than other people.” Also, 23 percent said they’d rather date a cyclist than another sportsperson, and 27 percent would want a cyclist on their pub quiz team.
Sweet ideas: Saul Alinsky’s advice for agents of change: make your tactics fun. That’s exactly what 24-year-old Portlander-turned-Chicagoan Daniel Ronan seems to be doing by envisioning cities that are safer for (gingerbread) people.
Green dividend: If the 51 largest U.S. metro areas could reduce miles driven by one mile per person per day, the country would redirect $31 billion a year into more productive uses, a new CEOs for Cities report concludes.
Seinfeld’s commute: Jerry Seinfeld loves cars, but says the “neatest and most fascinating and cool” thing that he gets to do on a daily basis is walk or bike to work. “I love traffic reports because I’m not in any of them,” he writes.
Assisted driving: Gadget blog Gizmodo looks at three systems being tested in London to warn drivers they’re about to hit someone in their blind spot.
Car-free high street: The new mayor of Brussels wants to return his city’s main thoroughfare to its roots: from “a handsome but car-snarled four-lane boulevard and a string of squares into a long, café-filled promenade” with no cars allowed.
Alaskan trails: “Fat bikes are almost as ubiquitous as cross-country skis on some Anchorage trails”, writes the Anchorage Daily News in a big trend piece on the new trend in town.
Olympic cyclocross: Cross lovers are starting a push to add the sport to the Winter Olympics.
Olympia bows out: With the Washington Senate focused on dealing with cost overruns for Seattle’s latest freeway megaproject, it’s got little interest in picking the Columbia River Crossing back up — meaning the only lifeline for the project is Oregon’s go-it-alone plan to put tolls on the overwhelmingly Washington-based bridge users.
Natural traffic calming: Want to know the perfect candidates for sidewalk bumpouts in your city? Wait for it to snow and see where the plows don’t bother going.