jueves, 9 de abril de 2015

What Bicycle Boom?

Wow! There' a cyclist among those cars!
Can you spot the cyclists in these photos, among all the cars?

The cyclist is the dot on the upper left.
A month ago, after the bicycle summit in Medellin, there was much talk of a 'bicycle boom' in Colombia, and across Latin America. Maybe it's true in some places, and one does see lots of bikes in specific spots in Bogotá.

But the real boom here, tragically, is in private cars. And a recent report by the DANE made it official: in Colombia, bicycle commuting is actually DOWN from last year, while commuting to work by car is INCREASING.

According to the DANE, bicycle commuting dropped dramatically from 4.4% in 2013 to 3.5% last year
El Tiempo 'Use of cars increases and of bicycles drops.'
Of course, this shouldn't be surprising. For all of the Petro administration's commendable pro-bike publicity campaigns and new bike lanes, they can't compete with the economic and propaganda onslaught pushing private car use.

'Free Parking.' Free parking is not only a huge subsidy for car driving, but also sends a message that you are supposed to drive everywhere.
But Petro could still save the situation, by supporting the London-style congestion charge he talked about upon election (but then proceeded to abandon).

There a cyclist!
Thousands of cyclists turn out on Sundays and Holidays for La Ciclovia. But few of these people go to work or school on two wheels.
When many bicyclists, like this guy, feel compelled to wear gas masks because authorities don't bother to control pollution, is it any wonder that lots of people fear pedaling?
One of the chronic traffic jams in La Candelaria. On the hill above the neighborhood the private Universidad Externado is building a huge parking garage. 

Any bikes in sight?
Blog by Mike Ceaser, of Bogota Bike Tours

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