Towers in a Bike Park

Cyclist passing the Cite Radieuse, a modernist residential housing complex designed by Le Corbusier, in Marseille, France.

Two problems with Le Corbusier’s idea of towers in a park: 1. the parks became car parks, and 2. walking in parks is so bloody boring! I mean, seriously, once your kite has been ruined and your helium balloon has gone down, where is the fun? Only two parks spring to mind that bring me joy, and those are Central Park in New York and Centennial Park Sydney, both because they are set up for lapping or crossing by bike.

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If Corbusian towers all hovered above parks like Central or Centennial Parks, that gathered up the main cycle routes in their cities, and coiled them into a velodrome, then perhaps I’d be swayed. Actually I’m describing the park beneath my student Amy Pedder’s proposal for Launceston. In briefest summary, it is a Corbusian slab-block looking upon a bicycle park. Note the cross-over apartments in the section below:

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Note too the bike canopies made from photovoltaic panels. If as a species we stopped spending public money on driving, but invested in active transportation instead, it would only be a few decades before all the world’s bike routes had canopies that doubled as power plants.

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My students and I are just going to keep putting ideas like these out there, and leave it to people to decide how they would rather live.

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