Archive for the ‘Cycling’ Category

„Das neue Gesicht des Fahrradfahrens“

Samstag, Oktober 16th, 2010

Unter diesem Titel hat der ORF eine Reportage über die sich entwickelnde Fahrradkultur in Wien verfasst. Ich kann nur empfehlen, ein bisschen hinzulesen. ->

Radweg entlang des Naschmarktes

Mittwoch, September 1st, 2010

Ich hab gerade entdeckt, dass die Mariahilfer Grünen eine Petition zum Lückenschluß des Wiental-Radweges im Bereich des Naschmarktes aufgelegt haben. Der Wiental-Radweg ist zwar als gesamtes recht nervig, da er mit möglichst geringen Platzverbrauch entlang der Wien hingequetscht wurde und man deshalb ständig mit engen Kurven, unübersichtlichen Straßenquerungen und anderen Unannehmlichkeiten konfrontiert wird. Aber das alles ist scheinbar noch genug, bei der Kettenbrückengasse ist es dann ganz aus und man darf entweder auf die Gumpendorferstraße oder die Margaretenstraße/Operngasse ausweichen um in die Innenstadt zu gelangen. Oder man traut es sich, der „Autobahn“ der rechten Wienzeile zu folgen.

Ich hab selber schon mal beim Magistrat nachgefragt, ob nicht ein Lückenschluß beim Naschmarkt geplant ist, mir wurde aber ausweichend geantwortet, dass noch keine Lösung für die verlorengehenden Parkplätze gefunden wurde. Nun, meiner Meinung nach sind fahrende Räder besser als stehende Autos. Gegenmeinungen? Ich würde mich in den Kommentaren über eine Diskussion freuen.

Wie auch immer, ich möchte Euch hiermit aufrufen, Euch an der Petition zu beteiligen und Eure Namen dafür herzugeben.

Interview with Mikael, the promoter of „Slow Bicycling“

Dienstag, Februar 9th, 2010

Diesen Blogpost gibt es auch auf Deutsch.

For quite some time now I enjoy reading the blog „Copenhagenize“ of Mikael Colville-Andersen, dedicated to promote cycling as a safe and healthy way of transportation. Copenhagen has a very high modal split for cycling, more than 30% of all ways are done by cycling. Vienna has about 5% and is already proud about it (no way to be proud about 5%). If you are interested what he has to say about cycling, you might want to check out this interview.

Check out his blogs:

  • Copenhagenize, dedicated to promoting Cycling internationally, with many examples and discussions how and how not cycling is promoted in Denmark and elsewhere
  • Copenhagen Cycle Chic, a blog about Cycling and Fashion
  • Slow Bicycle Movement, a blog to promote cycling as a enjoyable way of transportation

Cycling once more

Mittwoch, Juli 1st, 2009

So, now it’s the last week of Erasmus in Bulgaria. Tomorrow we will have a little fare-well party, then with some friends to the sea side for some days. I’m looking forward, it will be very nice for sure. I suppose this is the last post on my blog which I write from Bulgaria, at home the internet stopped working today (new month, I don’t think it’s worth to pay for it anymore, but a friend of me has her diploma presentation today, therefore I went to university and took the opportunity to make use of one of the open wireless networks around). Next week I will have one day in Sofia, on Wednesday I’m going (by way of Vienna to drop of some things) to the ‚State of the Map‘-conference (THE OpenStreetMap-conference) in Amsterdam. I’m sure I will be able to give you some „live“ impressions from there on my blog.

Now I want to raise some more thoughts about cycling. Even the Sofians start to build bicycle lanes everywhere, but they still have a lot to learn. In my opionion it’s not (only) the amount of bicycle lanes that matters, it’s the interconnection of those. A good example is the first image: You see that bicycle road parallel to the big road? It’s a good road, I used it many times (for walking and cycling). But if you want to go there or leave it, you have to cross the bridge to the left (which is brand new), where you find more or less the same situation (at least you can go to some underpass), or you do it like the cyclist, who bravely crosses the big road.

The second picture: Do they really want to make us cycle on that lane? Not that it’s curvy and narrow as hell, there are also many pedestrians. Beside the high possibility of accidents, the pedestrians will not be happy about the cyclists, although in fact, it’s the politians who make these stupid decisions (but they will be angry about the cyclists, like in Vienna). If I cycle, I want to cycle fast.

What shall I say about the third one? Actually I’m surprised how they managed to paint the bicycle lane, maybe they were waiting for each parking space until it was free.

In the last days I was watching some short movies about Copenhagen, it must be a wonderful city, especially for cyclists. I started to wonder … I know many cities, which are proud to have a high modal split (percentage of ways in a cities made by a special kind of transportation, like car, public transportation, walking, cycling, …) for cycling and walking. And those cities are glowing from their public spaces and cultural life. Do you know any cities which are proud to have a high percentage of car use? I don’t know any, because they usually are stuck with traffic. So municipalities, go out, build bicycle lanes and take the space from the roads, not the pedestrians. You can only win cultural life and happy inhabitants!

Oh, and please do something against bicycle robbery … my second bike got stolen last week, while I was having a small dinner and a short beer in a restaurant.

Cycling, Cycling, Cycling

Donnerstag, Mai 21st, 2009

You know, I’m a passionate cyclist. But since my bike got stolen in middle of October, I’m without a ride here in Sofia. I didn’t really miss it, because this place is just not made for cycling.

But, something amazing happened :) A friend of my mother, Nordfried, was doing a cycle tour from Novi Sad in Serbia to Vidin in the very north-west of Bulgaria along the Danube. To go back to their home country (Germany) they came to Sofia and wrote me an e-mail beforehand if I would be willing to help them with train tickets and show them around a little bit. For sure, I like being a guide, I myself always learn something new. After helping with train tickets Nordfried offered me to take his bike – he had just bought it in Novi Sad and has no use for it in Germany. I’m feeling so flattered … I’m very happy about it. But still I’m afraid to use it, because I don’t want it to be stolen again. And I need a good place for the night. First I need a good lock!

Two days later on Saturday, there was an invitation to a „bike parade“ through Sofia, to demand more bicycle lanes. As I have my new ride now, it was mandatory for me to go there. And I was really amazed, I think there were more than 2000 people. I didn’t even think there were so many bikes in Sofia (ok, I’m kidding). Afterwards there was a small party in the „Kolodrum“, a former bicycle arena, but I decided to go to the night of museums with free entrance. I think Sofia needs some more years, but finally it could become a good place!

In the last days I read in my newspaper, that – maybe due to the financial crisis – many more people uses bikes for their everyday ways in Vienna as in the last years. At the most important counting point – at the Ring near the State Opera – there’s an increase of about 25% to the last year. On other points, Lassallestraße, Kennedybrücke and Langobardenstraße the increase is about 50% (more statistics). This is really great news, I hope that the politicians now feel the need to do something (for example find a good solution for the cycle route at the Ring).

No more motorways!

Freitag, April 24th, 2009

Just two weeks ago I vent my anger on my blog about governmental financial support for cars and construction of new motorways. Today you could read on the news page of our federal broadcasting station about a study, that investing in cycling, public transportation and alternative means of transportation employs much more people and is much more sustainable – and the study talks only about the process of construction, not including the effects afterwards.

My words. I’m curious if our politicians will change their path … I doubt it.

But maybe there’s hope. Our planet deserves it.

Read the whole text here (for sure in German).

Scrap your Car!

Samstag, April 11th, 2009

… but please don’t buy a new one.

Maybe you don’t know it, but in Austria and Germany you get some money right now if you scrap your old car and buy a new one instead. It’s meant to be an encouragement for the economy, at times of the financial crisis. In my opinion this is completely bullshit, because I believe cars are not sustainable. They are just energy consuming, space consuming (even worse) and a major factor of pollution (exhaust fumes, noise) in our cities. And they cause a lot of accidents, many of them lethal (the new cars, which are usually bigger are much more dangerous – not for the people inside, but outside).

The car industry is in a crisis right now (I can’t say, that I’m not happy about this). But does this measure really help? Okay, they can produce a lot of new cars right now … but what next? Who will buy a new car in half a year? or in a year? Don’t all this people who plan to buy a car soon buy it now? So the next crisis will come soon … And what to do then?

I would love to see an encouragement of our government(s) and municipalities to use other means of transportation. In Public Transportation there are a lot of sustainable jobs (building new buses, trams and metros, construction of new lines, drivers, mechanics, …). Cycling – maybe not so many jobs, but most of them are in small or medium sized companies.

Happily, I’m not the only one, who thinks like this:

  • The German city of Mannheim introduced a bonus if you get rid of your old bike and buy a new one instead.
  • The „Verkehrsclub Deutschland“ demands a national wide bonus for users of public transportation, cycling and other means of transportation.
  • (the young lobby for cyclists in Austria) demonstrates against the scraping bonus for cars and demands the promotion of cycling.
  • „Argus – Die Radlobby“ (lobby for cyclists in Austria) introduced their own bonus – there’s a discount on a new „KTM – Velvet“ of 250€ if you buy it now.
  • The VCÖ (Verkehrsclub Österreich) started a petition for a bonus of 100€ if you buy a new bike or a yearly ticket for public transportation.
  • Die Grünen think the scraping bonus is just a bad April Fool’s joke and demand that the 25 Mio € should be invested into improvements to public transportation.

Now in our financial crisis we could have an opportunity to change the societies values. Our cities could be so much nicer if we have less cars. People wouldn’t go to big shopping centres but use shops in their neighbourhood – good for traffic reduction, good for the local economy.  Unfortunately I don’t see it happen. But the next crises will come soon, I’m sure about it.

Maybe people (and politicians) start to think (I doubt it).

What do you think? Do you have good ideas? Have you heard about other activism of groups?

Wieder Critical Mass

Donnerstag, Juni 19th, 2008
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Nicht vergessen, am Freitag, 20. Juni (also schon morgen) ist die nächste Critical Mass. Diesmal wieder unter dem Motto Naked Bike Ride. Darum: Aus dem Auto! Aus dem Gwand!

Treffpunkt: 16:30 am Margaretenplatz

Critical Mass

Donnerstag, Mai 15th, 2008

Kaum zu glauben, aber es ist schon wieder ein Monat vergangen! Am 16. Mai, also bereits morgen, startet die nächste Critical Mass (Wir fahren mit dem Rad durch die Stadt, wo uns normalerweise der Platz genommen wird)! Treffpunkt ist wie immer 16:30 am Margaretenplatz. Das Thema ist dieses Mal „Aliens against Autoholism!“.

In der Bikekitchen (ich habe berichtet) gibt es heute abend bereits einen Bastelworkshop um sein Rad ansprechend zu gestalten (z.B. zu einem Raumschiff umzubauen).

Infos wie immer auf

Ausflug Donauradweg

Dienstag, Mai 13th, 2008

Mittwoch wars, als ich ein Mail von Briggy bekommen hab, ob ich nicht Lust hätte am Wochenende über Pfingsten eine Radtour entlang der Donau zu unternehmen. Nachdem ich erstaunlicherweise für dieses Wochenende (nur 3 Tage davor) noch nichts vorhatte und ich wohlweislich ca. drei CouchSurfing-Requests abgelehnt hatte, sagte ich natürlich sofort zu. Eine Radwanderung entlang der Donau hatte ich schon lange vor.

Am Sonntag gings dann in der Früh mit dem Erlebniszug (so Spezialangebot für RadtouristInnen) nach Linz. Eine gemütliche Fahrt, die wir spielend und plaudernd verbrachten. Wir mussten uns auch noch mit einander bekannt machen, hatte doch Briggy über CouchSurfing einige Leute eingeladen. Insgesamt waren wir dann sechs Personen (Briggy, Eva, Susi, Andres, Roman und ich) wobei uns Roman am Montag in Melk verlassen musste, dafür schloss sich Esther dort dann an.

Am ersten Tag führte uns der Weg nach Ybbs (insg. 86 km). Wir hatten ziemlich mit dem Gegenwind zu kämpfen (wer rechnet damit, dass es Ostwind gibt), darum waren wir auch ordentlich geschlaucht, als wir endlich ans Ende unserer Route kamen. Dort wurden wir von unserer CouchSurfing-Host Martina empfangen, die uns tatsächlich zu sechst bei sich aufnahm :)

Am zweiten Tag führte uns der Weg dann zuerst nach Melk wo ich Verwandte besuchte, die ich schon seit langem nicht mehr gesehen hatte. Die anderen haben inzwischen am Rathausplatz ein Frühstück eingenommen. Danach gings durch die wunderschöne Wachau von einem malerischen Ort zum nächsten. In Krems war dann eine grössere Pause angesagt, danach sind wir noch nach Tulln weitergeradelt. Mehr wäre hätten wir wohl nicht mehr geschafft. Nur Briggy war übermotiviert, sie hat uns bereits in Krems verlassen um noch den weiten Weg zu schaffen. 106 km warens für uns an diesem Tag, das war wohl genug.

Ein toller Ausflug wars, der Lust auf mehr macht, auch wenn mir jetzt noch diverse Muskeln schmerzen :)

Zu den Photos