Thursday, October 4, 2012

Taipei Bike commuting progress is frustrating

By the way it's world animal day today, a good time to start rounding up 2012. The only progress in Taipei recently seems to be adding bike rental instead of progress for adding bike lanes. For example, there are bikes for rent now at Xin-Yi Da-An Park at the Chien-Kwo South road (YES, just ACCROSS the 3 bike shops which are located there). This kind of stinks (Is the investor of the bikes trying to take away the business from bike shops ?) All you basically can do is bike around Da-An park and try to avoid pedestrians (Who have no clue they are walking on a bike lane). If you want to ride anywhere else, well.. there is no bike lane to the North, East, South or West. While MRT construction on Xin-Yi is coming to completion, there are no sign whatsoever bike lanes will apear (but gopefully I could be wrong). Wider side-walks for pedestrians do seeems to be the motto. Thus it looks like the bikers are again pointed to use the side-walks taking away space from pedestrians instead of cars and motorcycles. Though the government website indicates there will be bike lanes HERE though would one North-South (Tun-Hua) and a few East-West bikelanes make bike commuting a reality? Browsing the internet surprisingly the frustration for Taipei and Taiwan's bike infrastructure seems to be growing. Here are a few articles from 2012: Notice in the last article: According to the city’s Department of Transportation, an average of 23 people a day use the system. The department has budgeted NT$14 million (US$ 470,000) a year to manage the program, and incurred a loss of more than NT$10 million since its launch Just read through it. Does the rental service sound like a a positive perspective for the coming year(s) or should the government change their focus on bike lanes or should we just give up ever hoping Taipei can become bike commuter friendly?

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