…. or at least it doesn’t motivate them to use their bicycles.
My 2013 post: “Danish happiness: bicycle infrastructure”
Uber and Lyft are blamed for part of the three-year decline. I wonder if it is the absurdly high price (compared to in China) of electric-assist bikes that is also limiting the popularity of this modality. The article notes that “electric scooters” have cut into bike commuting. If we could get a decent electric-boost bike for $300, would we still buy scooters? This industry report from 2014 says “By utilizing lead-acid batteries, the cost of e-bicycles in China averages about $167. In comparison, e-bikes in North America cost on average $815 and those in Western Europe average $1,546, reflecting the different choice in battery chemistry, according to Pike Research.”
Considering Americans’ propensity for thievery (how long does a bike last in San Francisco?), $167 is a more reasonable price to pay than $815!
The map in the USA Today article shows the sharpest declines in the hilly cities where an electric bike would be the most helpful.
Can we say that bike infrastructure, like socialism, hasn’t truly been given a fair chance in the U.S.? Our capital investments in bike lanes would pay off if e-bikes were available at Chinese prices?