My last post
seems to have generated some interest
I guess there are 2 parts to this conversion. Are the stats correct and assuming they are correct, would it really make a difference to anyone sensible . I'll admit, I'm not completely convinced of either.
There are a couple of things I want to add. Firstly, there were additional stats from the Pedal Power meeting. In Canberra 10% of trips are less than 1 Km and 40% of trips are less than 5 Km. Both within riding distance (ignoring terrain and luggage).
Secondly, cars obviously scale with distance better than cycling. In practice this may not be important, but psychologically it makes a big difference. It's similar to people wanting unlimited internet access when they never use more than, say, half of their given quota anyway. People like to know the resource is available on tap if required. Of course, alternative forms of transport like buses, train etc are available to fill this void for cyclists.
I think the points Stephen makes are very subjective and could be argued either way for a particular person and/or route. For example, I find riding my motorcycle in the transit lanes down Adelaide Ave during peak hour far faster and less stressful than using the "green force fields" on my push bike. But I understand a lot of people would disagree.
I think there are a number of different ways we can get the participation rates up for cycling and many of these were discussed at the Pedal Power meetings. Personally, I see a lot of merit in encouraging people to just give it a go. People can then decide on their own whether it's good or not. From the experiences of myself and friends, a lot of people do see the advantages and decide to keep riding to work.1
. Sensible here is defined as anyone that would read my blog, which is the same definition I use for insane ;-)