October 11, 2009

"If you want to know if an urban environment supports cycling, you can forget about all the detailed 'bikeability indexes'...'

"... just measure the proportion of cyclists who are female."

26 comments:

chuck b. said...

Including the lesbians?

MadisonMan said...

This begs the question: How often are you using your new bike?

mc said...

Mapquest and similar sites have made routing much easier, even before gps became near universal.

I have long wished for a site which would outline the secondary or less trafficked streets for plotting a biking route. It seems like there must already be such a site but I don't know it yet.

As for the gender component I have biked through the higher risk neighborhoods for years. To and from work and also to and from more enjoyable recreational riding areas. I have been threatened very often and once jumped with my bike stolen. I ride inexpensive older bikes and (gasp!) denim shorts with a well worn back pack. No stupid tight jerseys and none of that silly biking regalia, which I loath as much as Anne hates men in shorts.

The women are wise to be careful.

traditionalguy said...

Good article. In Atlanta the "Bikeways" are also the hunting territory used by rapists and killers of young women. They are only safe if groups of women cycle together or single women cycle armed with their guns locked and loaded. The public highways are safe so long as it is daylight and the DUI taskforce has swept the area for a few months first. In short, the urban ares around Atlanta are not safe for women cyclists.

Shanna said...

Biking always seems kind of unsafe. Last year, one coworker who bikes to work broke her arm and one in a different office fell and did some major damage as well. And of course, cars hit cyclists not infrequently. I would rather walk to work than bike any day.

Women also do more stuff to get ready for work than men, like hair and makeup.

daubiere said...

"And of course, cars hit cyclists not infrequently. I would rather walk to work than bike any day."

the answer according to radical bike activists is, of course, to get all cars off the roads!!

do they still have those irritating bike anarchy groups anymore?

ironrailsironweights said...

Another possibility is that some women are reluctant to ride bikes because of the comments they might hear from men driving past.

Peter

JohnAnnArbor said...

Female or male, the bikers in Ann Arbor and surroundings ignore stop signs, red lights, and other traffic laws. Oh, a few pay attention, but the majority don't.

Why is that?

Meade said...

Most common report to police by motorists who hit bicycles:

"I never even saw it."

How to not get hit on a bike.

rhhardin said...

Bike paths are completely misguided.

What favors both cars and cyclists are wide outside lanes, and those should be built (by widening) instead.

1. Bike paths don't go where you want to go. Roads do.

2. Traffic laws are completely obscure at intersections with bike lanes.

3. Bike lanes become havens for broken glass and bits of metal, no longer swept clean by car traffic.

4. Bike lanes take traffic space and build up car resentment, which is not good for the bike riders.

I've bike commuted 8,000 miles a year since 1971, all of it in regular roads, with no problems at all.

campy said...

A woman needs a bicycle like a fish needs a man.

bill said...

rhhardin, sounds like you might be a fan of John Forester and vehicular cycling.

Penny said...

Just when I thought we were supposed to walk more.

EDH said...

ironrailsironweights said...

Another possibility is that some women are reluctant to ride bikes because of the comments they might hear from men driving past.

Is that comment within the clinical definition of a Freudian Slip?

Janis Gore said...

Hard to make a bed with an arm in sling.

Do you Althouse boys change sheets?

Penny said...

Janis, REAL boys don't make their beds. They LIE in them.

Well actually, they lay there, but it sounded much better when stated incorrectly, don't you think?

Janis Gore said...

Penny, my point is that it sucks to wash a pot or clean a bathtub when you are broken.

Men love us, and will take up for us, but do not vacuum floors.

For what it's worth, my boys don't lie, as far as I know. I'll find out. It's a small own.

Janis Gore said...

town

Penny said...

But do you bike, Janis?

Because if you do, and if you do in an urban setting, it would seem that someone is keeping track of your woman power.

Janis Gore said...

Hell no, Penny. And I have a gen-u-ine Western Flyer.

The real problem here is that there are no convenient places to park and lock them.

Yeah, it's a cheap bike, but how many of them is a person willing to subsidize?

Like, one. (I've had three locked bikes stolen in different cities.)If I want to give a bike away I'll give it to the Sheriff's Christmas program.

WV: epureta - a vitamin enhanced bottled water

Alex said...

So I can imagine the cancer rates among those who bike commute along regular roads to be much higher then drivers who exercise and eat right.

Jeff with one 'f' said...

I would say at least 40% of the cyclist that I see on the road in Brooklyn and Manhattan are female.

That said, one of the main reasons that I prefer to risk my neck riding a bike down Broadway every day is that I don't have to dawdle behind slow-walking women on the subway stairs and platforms. They're like living speedbumps!

Penny said...

SUBURBAN BIKING BROADS TELL ALL!

rhhardin said...

rhhardin, sounds like you might be a fan of John Forester and vehicular cycling.

Never heard of him.

But then I discourage bicycling for others and always have.

The fewer the bicycles on the road, the friendlier the motorists are when the get to you.

muddimo said...

"'Despite our hope that gender roles don’t exist, they still do,' says Jennifer Dill"

Why would you hope that, Ms. Dill? Is there an objective rationale? History shows the humans have always organized around gender roles to some extent. Are we so enlightened, now at this moment in time, compared to our ancestors? Don't many women, and men, find their gender roles satisfying? If not, is it mostly because of people like you?!


wv: "plikies" = some kind of rain wear. Put on your plikies and go jump in some puddles.

Meade said...

This begs the question: How often are you using your new bike?

MadMan,
For commuting to work - not at all.

Recreational riding has been curtailed by foot surgery and recovery which, by the way, is going very well. (She'll be XC skiing by xmas, I predict.)

But more importantly, she doesn't want to ruin it for rh.