Friday, February 12, 2010


So how much is actually being done to help the Bike Commuter. Consider the sort of thing done for those using fossil fuel instead of pedal power.

1) Travel allowances: Some companies offer travel allowances and its tax deductible.
2) Some companies provide bus transport for workers
3) Huge investments in transportation and safety infrastructure

So whats being done for the bike commuter? At first glance, nothing, but, there are certainly some things happening.

1) Government is investing in cycling infrastructure. The Port Elizabeth coastal bike paths are the biggest investment in cycling infrastructure over the past decade.

2) Government is promising to spend on bicycle transportation. I have only seen very limited coverage of Shova Kalula, but, the program nonetheless should be supported to become more wide spread.

In practical terms, those doing the CDC (Coega Daily Commute) are directly benefiting from the coastal bike path. A journey that used to take 1 hour 20 minutes over rough terrain, is now taking an hour over smooth comfortable terrain with less damage to the bike. However, there is so much more that can be done. Consider this:

1) Do any of the employers provide incentives for cycling to work? None! Zilch! Nothing! In the UK, an employee can claim back tax under the government bike to work scheme. Up to 50% of the cost of the bike is tax deductable. Perhaps this is one of those Tips for Pravin that must be pursued. I have made the suggestion - have you? On my CDC (Coega Daily Commute) I see at least 10 people every morning doing the commute.

2) It pains me to see the monumental waste of money of corporate clothing, yet, nothing is spent on cycling specific gear. Corporates spend millions on T-shirts, tops, and tracks suits, all largely non functional gear. Ask any bike commuter and they will tell you - weather is not a problem (even in Scotland) - as long as you have the clothing.

3) The bikes being used by the typical commuter are shockers. There are some basics that need to be taught and its simply not being done.

So if you support bike commuting we'd best starting thinking of ways to address the above.

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