Europe's Cycling Commuters
Biking to Work, Avoiding Pubic Transit
There is a significant trend from the global pandemic: individual personal mobility is far preferable to public transportation. As a result, bikes are getting a big boost in Europe as governments search for means to get people safely to work without crowded buses, trains and subways. As the lock-downs ease and people start returning to their places of work, many will be doing a cycling commute.
Britain and France
Britain has just rolled out a $308 million emergency active travel fund to get commuters to cycle to work. France is investing $22 million to develop and subsidize cycle commuting. Both countries are also installing temporary bike lanes to facilitate the cyclists.
Many cities in northern Europe, like Amsterdam, have a long history of travel by bikes and they have the infrastructure in place to support it. In the Netherlands, 27% of commuting is done by bike. In contrast, in the UK, only 4% of commuting is by bike.
Bike Sales Are Booming
While most of the global economy has been in pause, bike sales are
booming both in Europe and in the US. Workers are anxious to
avoid crowded public transportation where social distancing is
next to impossible. In the UK, sales of the Van Moof electric bikes shot up 184% during February, March and April. For the Amsterdam based company, global sales are up 48%.
Scrambling to Encourage Individual Personal Mobility
The British government is urging workers to cycle or walk to work. It is changing road infrastructure to accommodate cyclists. Britain is also implementing electric scooter trials and may include the option for travelers to rent them by early June.