Traveling throughout Europe this summer, I experienced several modes of transportation: From planes to trains, to buses, bikes and more.
I was pleased to come across this bit of news from the NY Times’ In Transit blog that featured an interesting event going on in Prague — one of the amazing cities I was lucky to visit during my trip.
Critical Mass, an event drawing attention to the bike culture, is being held Sept. 25 in Prague. The event begins with a “sustainable living” street party, eco-friendly fashion shows, music and more. Then the fun begins. Participants will bike a two-hour trip across main sections of the city and Nusle Bridge. Last year, approximately 5,000 cyclists participated.
Cycling is slowly but surely becoming a part of the city’s culture. Prague City Hall even launched a committee dedicated to improving the infrastructure for the city’s cyclists. More and more cities across Europe and the globe have begun to accept bikes as a serious means of transportation for its residents, clearly a good sign for the sustainability movement.
Another city I visited, London, has also recently launched a bicycle-renting program called Barclays Cycle Hire. Barclays has docking stations located throughout the city and residents simply need to sign up online, rent a bike and go! The program isn’t free (with the exceptions of trips up to 30 minutes which are!) but short trips won’t break the bank. Similar programs are also offered in Paris; Stockholm, Sweden; Helsinki, Finland; Barcelona, Spain; and more! In the U.S., Minneapolis recently unveiled its system as well as Washington, D.C., and Pentagon City in Arlington, Va.
Hopefully we will see a similar program here in the Valley in the near future.