Bicycles in Oslo

Morten showed me this article by David Byrne (of Talking Heads fame) about bicycling in NYC: Link. I wholeheartedly agree with him. Bicycling is the best way to get around in any town. I’ve cycled in a couple of cities (London was scary), and the alertness you need to navigate through traffic coupled with the sense of superiority because you’re faster than the gridlocked cars is a wonderful drug.

Two things stuck in my head: One, he calls the painted-on bike lanes “imaginary bike lanes”, and that is true for Oslo, too. They are generally treated by motorists as a parking lane and by everyone else as a dumping ground for glass bottles. With a racing bike and sensitive tires, it’s best to ignore their existence entirely.

Secondly, I liked the mayor of Bogota: “If an eight year old kid can’t ride on it safely then it isn’t a bike lane.” I wonder how many city planers would let their eight year old child take a trip on the (imaginary) bike lanes around Oslo’s Ring 2? Would you?


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