So you think you deserve to host the Olympics?

microcord

Maximum Pace
Aug 28, 2012
914
294
83
Tokyo
#1
Melbourne:
proxy.php?image=https%3A%2F%2Fupload.wikimedia.org%2Fwikipedia%2Fcommons%2Fthumb%2F8%2F82%2FMelbourne_City_Bikes.JPG%2F320px-Melbourne_City_Bikes.JPG&hash=1054af3d0cb68e12de32465c19060637


Paris:
proxy.php?image=https%3A%2F%2Fupload.wikimedia.org%2Fwikipedia%2Fcommons%2Fthumb%2F9%2F96%2F%2527Cycle_rental_stand%2527_in_Paris..jpg%2F320px-%2527Cycle_rental_stand%2527_in_Paris..jpg&hash=a616a280e9a039970ab16ec380cbc979


Berlin:
proxy.php?image=https%3A%2F%2Fupload.wikimedia.org%2Fwikipedia%2Fcommons%2Fthumb%2F6%2F62%2FCall-a-Bike_Berlin.JPG%2F320px-Call-a-Bike_Berlin.JPG&hash=1d2fb127aca415a9f19f4cdb04d1a712


Ansan:
proxy.php?image=https%3A%2F%2Fupload.wikimedia.org%2Fwikipedia%2Fcommons%2Fthumb%2F7%2F75%2FAnsan_186.JPG%2F320px-Ansan_186.JPG&hash=bce7cc854b8814881836685b4b160ba0


London:
proxy.php?image=https%3A%2F%2Fupload.wikimedia.org%2Fwikipedia%2Fcommons%2Fthumb%2Fa%2Fa7%2FBoris%2527_Bike_Company%252C_W8_-_geograph.org.uk_-_2156588.jpg%2F160px-Boris%2527_Bike_Company%252C_W8_-_geograph.org.uk_-_2156588.jpg&hash=19c953ece7d3ef5a5e359ce9fc96d556


Dortmund:
proxy.php?image=https%3A%2F%2Fupload.wikimedia.org%2Fwikipedia%2Fcommons%2Fthumb%2Fb%2Fb0%2FDortmund-101018-18845-Metrorad.jpg%2F320px-Dortmund-101018-18845-Metrorad.jpg&hash=763e92bf65ca501a02196a9dda661d2d


Hangzhou:
proxy.php?image=https%3A%2F%2Fupload.wikimedia.org%2Fwikipedia%2Fcommons%2Fthumb%2F6%2F6a%2FHangzhou_bike_sharing_station.jpg%2F320px-Hangzhou_bike_sharing_station.jpg&hash=565ec1ebe9012ba6da96441e3e25b1f3


Nueva York:
proxy.php?image=https%3A%2F%2Fupload.wikimedia.org%2Fwikipedia%2Fcommons%2Fthumb%2F6%2F63%2FSpring_Lafayette_citibike_opening_jeh.jpg%2F216px-Spring_Lafayette_citibike_opening_jeh.jpg&hash=0b03b5378dae8d7deef9997ca2812e2c


Tokyo?

More broadly, the contrast between
  • Tolerance of parking your car, keeping the engine running, turning on the air conditioner, closing the windows, and falling asleep
  • Ubiquity of signs saying that parked push-bikes will have their locks broken and will be taken away to some dump
is one that I've observed for years, during which time it has curiously failed to become more palatable. I realize that Tokyo hasn't had a "governor" (mayor) worth a damn since 1979, but is there some organization (or even politician) that's making intelligent attempts to change this? I'm in a mood to donate some cash.
 
Likes: theDude

FarEast

Maximum Pace
May 25, 2009
5,528
538
193
Yokohama
#4
Also with a little more research you'll find that London only got the bike program AFTER they won the 2012 Olympic bid and then a huge injection of cash from Barclays as they saw it as a cheap ride (pun intended) to get on the London Olympic band wagon.

It's 3rd largest system with Paris and China way a head and the Chinese system was introduced due to the need to seriously reduce the huge pollution issues.

Also Japan is naturally a bicycle culture and as you are probably aware the mamachari has replaced the family car for many - so why have a system in place to encourage people to ride short distances when they are already taking the kids to school, doing the shopping and riding to the local train station to commute to work or large biz to use the bicycle to deliver fresh produce, post, packages etc around the city .

If you do a little more research on the number of bicycles owned per capita, the UK, US and France aren't even there Japan however is 7th.

Should I stop or are you hungry for more?
 
Last edited:

microcord

Maximum Pace
Aug 28, 2012
914
294
83
Tokyo
#5
Congratulations. You have won this month's "most stupid post".
Great, thank you! I'll try to win it next month, too. And FarEast, yes, I'm hungry for more! London may have got the scheme as a result of the Olympics, but planning was made public before then: this February 2008 Guardian article quotes Ken Livingstone planning a bike-friendly London. (Much of this may have been hot air, but at least he was talking the talk.)

More encouragement to cycle short distances would likely be compatible with help cycling longer distances. I'd like places where I can leave my bike free of charge, without the risk of having it legally removed and tossed into the back of a truck. Indeed, when the mama rides her chari to one or more stores that don't happen to be near a station for which she has bought a parking permit, where is she to leave it while she shops?

Those white bikes are unfamiliar to me. The pic seems to come from this CNN page, which says they're from Cogicogi, a new name that's again unfamiliar. Here's Cogicogi. If I understand the website correctly, all the locations are in the NE of Tokyo: one at Akihabara, a couple at Ueno, and the others further to the east. As it happens, I haven't had reason to go to the area for over a year, aside from one hurried evening. So I hope that my ignorance is slightly excusable. I do appreciate the way in which the Cogicogi bikes don't (obviously) advertise any company.
 
Jun 6, 2013
119
18
38
40
#6
London may have got the scheme as a result of the Olympics, but planning was made public before then
Ahhh, London won the Olympic bid in 2005. Games are awarded 7 years before they are held.


Here's Cogicogi. If I understand the website correctly, all the locations are in the NE of Tokyo: one at Akihabara, a couple at Ueno, and the others further to the east.
The CNN photo was not taken at Akihabara or Ueno obviously. It's this one:
http://www.ecostation21.com/ecoport.html
The bikes were done on a trial basis apparently, the Shinagawa one was Nov last year through Jan this year.
 

microcord

Maximum Pace
Aug 28, 2012
914
294
83
Tokyo
#7
Ahhh, London won the Olympic bid in 2005. Games are awarded 7 years before they are held.
Of course! I blame a caffeine shortage. (Others may attribute it to senility.)

The CNN photo was not taken at Akihabara or Ueno obviously. It's this one:
http://www.ecostation21.com/ecoport.html
The bikes were done on a trial basis apparently, the Shinagawa one was Nov last year through Jan this year.
Now this really is odd. I would have often been as close as Gotanda station. Either I didn't see the bikes or (just as likely) since they neither were/are distinctive/ugly nor advertise(d) anything they would just have registered in my consciousness as "white bikes".
 

FarEast

Maximum Pace
May 25, 2009
5,528
538
193
Yokohama
#8
So Mircocord, let me get this right.

You believe Tokyo should not get the Olympic games because you failed to do any real research in to the fact that they do or don't have a bike hire/share scheme in areas that are of notice or importance to you personally and aren't advertised according to your tastes and because some people whom are waiting take a nap in their car with the engine running and the air conditioning on full blast and that they do not have free parking to leave their bike?

Seriously mate.

In regards to removal of bicycles. The ordinary push cycle is considered under Japanese law as a light vehicle, which means that you can't just park them anywhere you see fit. However the law is also on your side, unlike other countries where they will just take the vehicle here in Japan they have to post a warning that it is indeed parked illegally - they normally tape and A4 piece of paper to the floor stating its parked in the wrong place and that if you could be so kind not to do it again.

Then if after 1 hour your vehicle is still there they will remove it.

So your Mama is able to park her bike illegally for 1 hour while she does her shopping and here is the joke, if she moves the bike away from the warning even by 30cm then the police have to issue another warning and wait another hour.

So I hope that my ignorance is slightly excusable
Not really mate, your rant just comes across as anti Japanese and seems more suitable for sites like Japan today.

I think Japan has gone the right way with these bike share/hire schemes. Rather than investing millions in to a system that might not actually be used and there are a lot of these "Oh lets jump on the bike band wagon" schemes that then never get used.

As I mentioned before Japan is a nation where the bike is prolific, from HS kids riding to school (Most nations are encouraging kids NOT to ride to school) to major companies using them as delivery vehicles in and around the capital - the only people these bike share schemes are going to benefit are tourists and with a little research you'll see that these systems are appearing in major Japanese tourist locations or have been in place for a number of years - Yokohama for instance tested the scheme 5 years ago and now has a permanent system in place starting at Yokohama station and ending in Motomachi.
 

theBlob

Bokeh master
Sep 28, 2011
2,862
1,446
129
...
#9
Or maybe you were just fantasizing about the next essay you were going to "publish" here on TCC for us all to skip over as we scrolled the recent posts.

Now this really is odd. I would have often been as close as Gotanda station. Either I didn't see the bikes or (just as likely) since they neither were/are distinctive/ugly nor advertise(d) anything they would just have registered in my consciousness as "white bikes".
 

microcord

Maximum Pace
Aug 28, 2012
914
294
83
Tokyo
#10
Not really mate, your rant just comes across as anti Japanese and seems more suitable for sites like Japan today.
Oh dear. (I'd thought it was merely an anti-certain-aspects-of-Tokyo rant.) "Japan Today" is a dreary site indeed.

Though I've often seen taped-on warnings about wrong parking, I didn't know that there was a requirement for this. Instead, I'd taken the signs at their word. Questions of what is and isn't legal on/with a bike often seem complicated by what is and isn't implemented.
 

zenbiker

Maximum Pace
Mar 4, 2008
799
220
63
Chofu
#11
I've witnessed the removal of bikes from the streets of Chofu. No paper warnings were issued, just bikes hurled into the back of a truck. However, there are so many no parking signs around so to park where some of those morons park, probably doesn't require a warning.
I hear many of these abandoned bikes end up in North Korea.
Niigata city has a great low cost bike hire scheme. They use these abandoned bikes, cost is 100 yen from the cycle parking lots. Didn't the cost per cycle of London's Boris bikes work out at over £125,000 per bike:confused:
 

FarEast

Maximum Pace
May 25, 2009
5,528
538
193
Yokohama
#14
Is that right?
Are you sure you didn't mean ¥125,000 a piece?
It's not just the bike - but the maintenance, storage insurance over its life cycle. Not just the out right purchase of the actual bike.

But in reality these bike share schemes as for the minority - What the country should be focusing on is encouraging people to ride to work. In the UK not only can you get a discount on a bike if it's for commuting but some companies will actually pay you.

Here in Japan regardless of what your HR team say you are legally allowed to ride to work, not only that but there is a calculation based on the most direct route to work how much you get back on your daily travel allowance.

On top of that your companies insurance will cover you for riding a bike to a from the office as long as you are taking the most direct route.

So if you really want to promote cycling and a healthy life style the governments and local authorities as well as large companies looking to promote GREEN should be shouting this from the roof tops.

My company pays me 16,000 JPY per month to ride my bike to work every day! Cha CHING!
 
Last edited:
Likes: thomas
Apr 3, 2012
401
98
48
Tama Center <-> Otemachi
#15
Here in Japan regardless of what your HR team say you are legally allowed to ride to work, not only that but there is a calculation based on the most direct route to work how much you get back on your daily travel allowance. On top of that your companies insurance will cover you for riding a bike to a from the office as long as you are taking the most direct route.
Any reference material I can throw at my HR?
 

FarEast

Maximum Pace
May 25, 2009
5,528
538
193
Yokohama
#16
Are you working in Yokohama or Kawasaki? I f so I will ask the office to give me a copy of the documentation that got given regarding cycling to work, Tokyo maybe a different process.
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#18
1) I think rental bike availability has very little to do with Olympics. But they are quite useful. I even used one recently in France where the airport is conveniently located less than 30min from center of town. First 30min of rental bike is free. Voila! Free and easy transport to town! Then hop skip arround. Great for cities that have supportive infrastructure. Like the city I was in (Nice) which has extensive, in-city bike routes, segregated paths and even special signal lights at the intersections! (Something that is prevalent throughout Europe anyway).

2) I worked in a Japanese company more than 7yrs. In all that time, through 4 management and restructuring changes and locations around central Tokyo, the commute by bike question was ALWAYS met with a stern NO WAY.
- No law, but based on the company's insurance policy.
- Also based on the longstanding commutation [sic] compensation policy.
- Tatemae approach succeeded. I just rode to my commutation end station, parked the bike there and walked to work. As long as my coworkers didn't actually see me on a bike, they were fine. And since when they DID see me it was walking from the appropriate station - tatemae was served.

3) After the earthquake, many companies effected insurance policy changes to allow cycling commuting.

4) I live in Kawasaki and commute to central Tokyo almost every day. All I can say is it's a bitch. Every day is a near accident and when it's not that, I'm breathing heavily polluted air at volumes MUCH higher than sedentary commuters. I can choose a long circumvent down Tama - but then I need to fight my way back up through just as dangerous , crowded and mucky roads. Not fun. Going home at night is not so bad, though. I only got sideswiped 2 x tonite. Once by a black HiAce (whats up with them anyway?) and once by an errant K-Van (smallest things on the road, but they seem to have magnetic attractions to bikes). And , being evening, avoiding the random drunk Oyaji and Obasan suddenly stepping into the roadway.

Even if several thousand people a day started commuting along that route it would make zero dent in the issue and it would be far worse for everyone. The infrastructure simply does not support high speed (30kph+) bike commuting. Spend a day in Zurich, Seattle, Portland, Amsterdam or many other bicycle-centric cities and you'll know what I mean.
 

Gunjira

Maximum Pace
Oct 2, 2009
1,002
176
83
Tokyo
#19
Getting swiped a lot Tim, everybody stay safe out there. Comutting policy with my company has recently changed, making the impossible possible. But, as you have to prove that you have a legal parking spot, effectively nothing changed. Its the infrastructure, baby. So quick, let's build new stadiums and get those reactors online again. Tatemae = farce
 
Likes: joewein

joewein

Maximum Pace
Oct 25, 2011
2,424
862
133
Setagaya, Tokyo
joewein.net
#20
Every day is a near accident
Seriously Tim: then you need to change something, or it's only a matter of time when you'll be in the hospital. Serial near-misses are not sustainable. If people around you make too many mistakes then you need to compensate somehow, even if it slows down the commute. I know that's easy to say for me, with my down two flights of stairs commute...

once by an errant K-Van (smallest things on the road, but they seem to have magnetic attractions to bikes)
K-vans and K-trucks are mostly driven by old guys (I mean, quite a bit older than you and I ;) ) who may not see you as well. On the plus side, being narrower they have more margin for error than a big truck or bus when they squeeze past you.

I have more of a problem with drivers of big vans. They have more of an SUV-type attitude.