Detroit Bike City

This is such a nice mini-documentary made about riding bikes in Detroit.

“There’s not many things better than riding a bike in life”

Bikes and music – Events in Oslo spring/summer/fall 2011

April
– 29.: Critical Mass

May

– 14.: Sykkelens dag (arr: SLF)
– 17.: National Day, 17. mai for alle @ Kubaparken
– 27.: Critical Mass

June
– 4.: Oslo Miljøfestival (arr: Grønn Hverdag)
– 4.: Musikkens dag
– 9.-13.: Norwegian Wood
– 24.: Critical Mass

August 
– 9.-13.: Øyafestivalen
– 15.-20.: Oslo Jazzfestival
– 26.: Critical Mass

September 
– 30.: Critical Mass

October 
– 28.: Critical Mass

Spring’s first Critical Mass in Oslo Friday April 29th!

Bring a bike and join the season’s first Critical Mass downtown Oslo this friday. Meet up by the stairs in front of the palace at five pm. For more info see this facebook-event.

And more events to come…

Bicycles day 2010 – Oslo

Yesterday was Bicycles day  (Sykkelens dag) downtown Oslo. I joined a small and nice bike ride (somewhat like Critical Mass) from Birkelunden to Rådhusplassen, organized by Syklistenes landsforening

Books

Yesterday I went to the Chris Carlsson meeting in Copenhagen, and it turned out to be a good one. All (three) speakers were engaged in the climate issue, and questioned the importance of COP15. Especially Chris Carlsson had some interesting views concerning peoples power. How do we turn the capitalism around, and could we all live in a “Burning Man”-society ?

Well, I won’t be discussing these issues deeply now this early in the morning, but I’d like to mention that I ended up buying two of Carlssons books. The new “Nowtopia” and “Critical Mass: Bicycling’s Defiant Celebration”.

I’ll probably comment on some of the bicycle related issues in these books later on, but for now you can check out the links or go get them in a bookstore.

I’ve earlier on gotten some arguments against critical mass as an effective instrument, but I’d still like to give the idea a chance. (Carlssons book might help me on the way.)

Any suggestions on different approaches towards getting to a bicycle-friendly society are absolutely very welcome…

Critical Mass!

Why don’t you jump on your bicycle to work, school or the grocery store when the weather is perfectly fine? Why is it only “sporty parents” that bike to work? And why do motorists get annoyed when you actually take your bike for a roll one day? How do one get the general population to notice bicycling as an actual and effectiv mean of transport in the city? How can bicyclists reclaim more space in the city traffic? Where do we start? And perhaps most importantly, who can make the changes?

Critical Mass - Bike Lift (Hungary)

Critical Mass - Bike Lift (Hungary)

My Italian friend, Nicola, told me about these bicycle-events going on in different cities in Italy every month, and after a short research it seems like this is a world wide movement/phenomenon… Critical Mass is an event where bicyclists “take over” the streets in the city, by making a more or less unorganized ride around the city, and for that short moment take a part of the road away from the cars. Or as the wiki-page states: “…these events should be viewed as “celebrations” and spontaneous gatherings, and not as protests or organized demonstrations. This stance allows Critical Mass to argue a legal position that its events can occur without advance notification of local police.

And last month, probably the worlds largest Critical Mass ride was held in Hungary, where about 20 000 bicyclists reclaimed the streets of Budapest. This huge event only occurs two times a year, but other cities around the world arrange smaller monthly events to promote bicycling, and there is a great amount of blogs talking about it.  There is an obvious reason why Copenhagen is not on the Critical Mass-list, since it seems to be a critical mass of bicyclists all over the city every single day. But why isn’t Oslo mentioned??

So what’s actually going on in Oslo?

Biking in Oslo. - Somethings happening, but apparently just a handful knows about it...

Biking in Oslo. - Something's happening, but apparently just a handful knows about it...

I read that Syklistenes Landsforening tries to organize some bicycle rides/events in Oslo each month, but little have I found about this on the Internet, and who noticed the bicyclists in the streets? I would like to see more documentation, if there is any…? (There have also been held campaigns to promote “bicycling to work” etc., but what about making these kinds of campaigns attractive to more than one type of people?) As of yet, I’m not completely updated on this, so I would like to hear from you if you see or know of any bicycle related events in the region.

I like the image of Norwegians as an eco-friendly people, and I definitely want to see more people (including myself) biking in the streets… (And don’t you even mention the worn out argument of “too many hills”, because it’s not! …it’s too many cars!) It’s clearly that the horrible organized infrastructure is a main problem, but the decision makers just don’t get it, do they…

I’m ready to roll, are you?

When will it happen in Oslo?

When will it happen in Oslo? ex: Prinsensgate. (Logo from Critical Mass Italy, sligthly adjusted.)