The latest in urban transportation – the velomobile


Just when you think you have seen everything in the bicycle and/or urban travel evolution, something new comes along that catches your fancy. This step in the evolutionary process has an an amazing resemblence a combination of soapbox derby racer and bicycle – the velomobile

Source: volumatrix.com

Their design is modern, sleek, and very eclectic – as a bike commuter, I want one of these in the worst way. A terrific feature is that many are designed to protect the rider from inclement weather. Granted, you still may not be able to ride it on ice in the winter, but each design step moves us closer to year-round bicycle commuting, even in the northern latitudes.

Source: designbuzz.com

There is even a version made for two, as shown below.

Source: recumbent.gallery.eu

As urban planners, there is a constant challenge to keep up with the on-going urban transportation evolution. From pedestrians and horses, to horse-drawn wagons, to horse-drawn street cars, to bicycles, to interurbans, to buses, to automobiles, to motorcycles, to trucks, to subways, to light rail, to commuter rail, to Segways, to motor scooters, to electric bicycles, to cargo bicycles, to EVs (electric vehicles), and now to velomobiles.

Each mode listed above has or had its own promises and pitfalls, but part of the fun of our profession is the opportunity to adapt to ever-changing scenarios.  If newer modes of urban transportation like Segways, EVs, velomobiles, and cargo bikes can reduce our nation’s dependence on fossil fuels, lower our carbon footprint, slow global warming, increase active exercise, and reduce obesity and diabetes rates, then their benefits far outweigh the minor inconveniences to meld them into the network.

Whenever an exciting new mode of transportation comes along, it is our responsibility as planners to formulate, design, and implement ways to safely blend it into the community’s transportation network.  Velomobiles are no different, they are just the latest step in the urban transportation evolutionary process.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Bicycling, cities, climate change, entrepreneurship, environment, health, transportation and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to The latest in urban transportation – the velomobile

  1. Pingback: Urban mobility – “share and share a bike” | Panethos

  2. I would like to thank you for the efforts you have put in writing this blog. I’m hoping the same high-grade web site post from you in the future as well. In fact your creative writing skills has encouraged me to get my own web site going now. Actually blogging is spreading its wings and growing quickly. Your write up is a great example. I have bookmarked your website: http://panethos.wordpress.com/2011/10/18/the-latest-in-urban-transportation-the-velomobile and will check back often. Thanks for the great post!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s