The next design challenge for architects

Architects might not realize it, but, if the cities in which they work, plan on following Portland’s or Copenhagen’s example, cultural change is afoot. After spending less on their cycleway system than they might otherwise have spent on just 1km of new freeway, Portland saw a ten-fold increase in the percentage of trips made by bike, from one hundredth of all trips, to one tenth of all trips. Remarkable as that is, scope remains for a further tripling of those rates, if Portland continues toward its goal of reaching the one third of all trips benchmark set by Amsterdam and Copenhagen. On the rapid path to those thirty-fold increases on pre-cycling base rates, fledgling cycling cities like London, Chicago, New York and Melbourne are witnessing spectacles: nude protest rides, valet bike parking stations, tweed runs, bike polo matches, cycle specific clothing boutiques, bunch rides, and bikes littering footpaths outside cafes.

Give the middle class a chance to claim minority status, and they will parade it.

   
Why, next they’ll be wanting bike friendly buildings. Would then every foyer look like The Bicycle Garage in Lilyfield Sydney? The need may comes as well, to revise data in those Metric Handbooks architects keep on their desks, to add minimum dimensions surrounding indoor bicycle storage.     

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