BikeCommuters.com

Tag Archive: economic stimulus

More bike commuters = economic boom

Here’s an inspiring “roundup” article about a number of cities (with a focus on Detroit) that are experiencing an economic uptick directly linked to their development of bike infrastructure and subsequent increase in bicycle commuters:

From custom frame builders in Detroit and messenger bag makers in Philadelphia to a bike-share startup in Tampa, the new bike-based economy is flourishing in U.S. cities. This startup ecosystem includes tour companies, pedicabs, mountain bike parks, artisan rack welders, bike rental outfits, bike-friendly bars and app developers.

Alison Dewey, program manager for the League of American Bicyclists’ Bicycle-Friendly Business program says these businesses are feeding off the rise in bike commuting and the fact that young people are now driving less. A recent released report from U.S. PIRG shows that car usage is declining after climbing for six decades straight. Meanwhile, bike commuting grew 39 percent on average from 2000-2010.

Read the full article by visiting the Detroit Free Press page.

Personally, I love the term “bike-based economy”…it gives me hope that our chosen form of transportation can be part of the stimulus cities need to recover financially. Has YOUR city seen an increase in bike-related businesses as a result of developing bike-friendly infrastructure? We’d love to hear about it.

Two Items in the National News

A couple of news items caught my eye in the past few days…one is more of speculation, rather than hard news, but it is intriguing nevertheless:

1. Speculation that Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) might be chosen by President-elect Barack Obama to be the Secretary of Transportation. If you’re not familiar with Sen. Blumenauer, you should look him up — a dedicated proponent of bicycling, rail, walking and other non-automobile transportation modes. The speculation is quite thrilling…and I think Sen. Blumenauer would be a fantastic choice.
via Cycleicious (with links to other tidbits).

There’s even some further speculation that Congressman Jim Oberstar (D-MN), chairman of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and a long-time champion of the bicycle, could also be in the running. Either one is perfectly fine for me!

2. “Democratic leaders in Congress urged the Bush administration on Saturday to consider using the $700 billion bailout for the financial system to aid distressed American automakers, in a prelude to what may become urgent negotiations over additional economic stimulus measures.” This is being reported in The New York Times. This push is backed by a letter signed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate majority leader Harry Reid (D-NV).

REALLY?!? This is the best you can come up with, elected officials? I mean, I feel terrible that a bunch of autoworkers could lose their jobs, but it seems to me (and I freely admit that I am quite biased on this issue) that pouring money into the automotive industry is the LAST thing we should be doing right now. What do the rest of you think?