Monday, August 23, 2010
I have seen the future and it's Danish
Denmark created a policy to encourage biking and the result is that almost 40% of Copenhageners commute that way. Incredible.
An interesting side effect: don't expect to see a lot of jocks in the bike lanes. Instead you see the typical commuters: cigarette in their lips, cell phone in one hand, no helmet.
I saw one guy with a popcicle in one hand and a map in the other, no hands on the handlebars. One day in the rain I saw a man in a suit bicycling, full speed ahead, with an open umbrella in front of him. I doubt if he could see anything, but he didn't seem to mind.
And worse, I saw a man riding with a baby (one year old?) on his hip. No helmets. Scary. As I understand it, children are required to wear helmets, and most of them did.
We rented bikes for about $80 for the week. Brought our own helmets. Our apartment was about four miles from downtown (south of Amager Faelled) Great ride to town. Highly recommended.
Oh, it probably doesn't hurt that the highest point in Denmark is only 600 feet high.
Photo by Mikael Colville-Andersen