05 June 2008

Work Bikes ~ Clean Transport for Vital Cities!

MIT's Jason Jay mentioned to me the other day that Frank Hebbert and friends did a study on Campus Work Bikes this past semester for an MIT class. Indeed, when I pinged him, Frank pointed me to their resulting video done in collaboration with the New Amsterdam Project here in Cambridge... One of the key ideas is that the MIT campus can be a pioneering testbed for trying these new modes and perfecting them for replication and scaling everywhere. I'm a big fan of this idea because then we at MIT will see the future first!

In this respect, the New Amsterdam Project is fascinatingly cool on multiple fronts. They are a "Boston Area Cargo Bicycles and Human-Powered Delivery Service" deploying cargo-capable work bikes (or more properly, I suppose, trikes... ...to service a dozen clients already. Radio Nederland did a nice story plus video about NAP's TriCycle Trucks... Such work bikes are the beginning of a vast movement, IMHO. This embraces certainly the bike messenger sector, but also the bike rental sector as represented by BlooBike here in Cambridge and Velib in Paris. Even fairly conservative Boston just approved 21 new permits for pedicabs, most going to the biggest player, Boston Pedicab...

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