Monthly Archives: February 2012

Dutch Kids Pedal Their Own Bus To School | Co.Exist: World changing ideas and innovation

Dutch Kids Pedal Their Own Bus To School | Co.Exist: World changing ideas and innovation.

In the Netherlands, bikes abound. And now, they even take kids to school. Behold, the bicycle school bus.

The Dutch are bicycle fanatics. Almost half of daily travel in the Netherlands is by bicycle, while the country’s bike fleet comfortably outnumbers its 16 million people. Devotees of the national obsession have taken the next logical step by launching what is likely the first bicycle school bus.

Built by Tolkamp Metaalspecials, and sold by the De Cafe Racer company, the bicycle school bus (BCO in Dutch) is powered entirely by children and the one adult driver (although there is an electric motor for tough hills). Its simple design has eight sets of pedals for the kids (ages 4 to 12), a driver seat for the adult, and three bench seats for freeloaders. The top speed is about 10 miles per hour, and features a sound system and canvas awning to ward off rainy days.

Read the full story here.

Now that’s something that needs to be copied here in the US!

Thanks to Betty of the Four-Blue-Hills Blog for drawing my attention to this innovation.

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Filed under bicycling, bicycling & politics, education, in the news, Transportation

Multiyear Transportation Bill

This morning I got the following e-mail from the “Rails-to-Trails Conservancy”:

Some are calling the draft multiyear transportation bill being considered in the U.S. House of Representatives “the worst bill ever.”
It’s hard to disagree with this regrettable distinction from a trails, walking and bicycling perspective. We need to stop the bill, now!
The bill as it is currently written would:

  • Eliminate dedicated funding for trails, walking and bicycling;
  • Destroy long-term dedicated funding for transit created by the Reagan Administration;
  • Do away with the rail-trail eligibility category in the Transportation Enhancements (TE) program;
  • Put our children in harm’s way by eliminating the Safe Routes to School program;
  • Fail to maximize its job creation potential, since trail, walking and bicycling projects create substantially more jobs per dollar than do highway projects;
  • Increase America’s dependence on foreign oil; and
  • Contribute to our growing health and obesity crises.

The bill could come to the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives in the next few days. Since it is beyond possibility of repair, we need to ensure that it does not leave the House floor.
We have no time to lose. Ask your representative right now to vote against the bill.
I’ll be doing everything in my power to ensure this bill is defeated in the House. I truly hope you’ll join me.
Even as we are working feverishly to defeat this House bill, please note that a Senate bill–which also fails to preserve dedicated funding for trails, walking and bicycling–will likely come to the Senate floor for debate and a vote next week as well. (When it rains, it pours!) We’ll be messaging you about that, too. Apologies in advance for so many messages from us in so short a timeframe, but please know that we wouldn’t write you so much if it weren’t absolutely necessary.
Thank you much,
Kevin Mills
Vice President of Policy and Trail Development
Rails-to-Trails Conservancy

I urgently ask my readers here to do everything possible to stop that bill and contact their representatives.

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Filed under bicycling, bicycling & politics, general, laws & ordinances, legislation