Tuesday, August 26

The Man Behind Copenhagenization

Mikael Colville-Andersen interview -- comparing Copenhagen and Amsterdam -- and the challenges of designing bicycle friendly cities. He's sounding a bit jaded these days, but matter of fact about the practical benefits of developing urban cultures in which cycling is the most practical transportation option. He's more of a pragmatist than a romantic Utopian.
If you make it accessible for people to do it, they will do the right thing. You can't just sit here waiting 40 years for them to live the environmentalist's dream. Environmentalism is the greatest marketing flop in the history of homo sapiens. It doesn't work...
In a way he is on target. If we're matter of fact about the benefits of cycling -- treating it as normative -- something that normal people -- wearing normal clothes -- running normal errands do -- all because it's the most practical way to go about -- only then, will people start to think of biking as normal. The more it comes across as a cool pop culture fad the less likely it will be to stick or have a long-term impact.

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