The Chariots are Coming
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Is that a chariot? Is it Ben Hur? Or a family on the school run?
Charles Ford of distributor, Pure Electric talks us through the new wheeled chariots of fire ready to take over the streets
Not ancient armies racing into battle, but a new kind of chariot...the cargo bike is poised to play its part in the cycling revolution. If you are not a fan of all things bikes, or visited JRTB pages before you might not have heard of a cargo bike, but they could be about to take the world by storm.
As the COVID19 lock-downs start to ease across the world, cities are transforming their urban space to increase space for bicycles and pedestrians to help with social distancing. London, for example, has outlined ambitious plans to pedestrianise roads in the heart of the city and close access to cars in favour of cycle, pedestrian and bus traffic.
Meanwhile Milan has chosen to turn 22 miles of streets into new cycle paths, and in the Colombian capital of Bogotá they have opened up 47 miles of temporary bike lanes.
But this creates a challenge: walking or riding a bike is ok, but they don’t have the capacity to carry large items. So now, how can you carry your shopping, a small child to school, or essential luggage to your destination? What if you are a last-mile delivery company and your vans can no longer access these areas?
The answer is the cargo bike
The cargo bike market has been slowly maturing over the last few years and now there is a range of robust, safe and functional bikes and e-bikes coming out of Europe. Particular innovation comes from the Netherlands where an established culture of cycling is part of the Dutch DNA.
Companies like Urban Arrow produce great, solid bikes, while Babboe cargo bikes are perfect for young families.
Cargo bikes are also the green, zero-emission answer to inner-city polluting vans. Research commissioned by the European Union concludes that 25% of all goods and 50% of all light deliveries in urban settings could be serviced by cargo bikes. This could help keep us breathing clean air, and revolutionise how businesses operate in cities.
It seems clear that now is the time for cargo e-bikes to take the world by storm, joining the booming e-bike market, which is currently driven by increased demand – Germany has noted a 35% increase in sales so far this year. Meanwhile, specialist electric mobility retailer PureElectric, has seen huge increases in demand for its products in recent weeks, which it thinks will continue to grow.
They are a faster, healthier and a more fun way to get around. Maybe you would buy one?
image copyright C. Ford, 2020
image copyright unsplash.com, 2020