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Making The BIXI Pledge 1

Photo by James D. Schwartz / The Urban Country The City of Toronto originally planned to bring year-round BIXI bicycle sharing to town in 2010 with 3,000 bicycles at 300 stations. It then encountered some funding complications and postponed BIXI Toronto’s inauguration to the spring of 2011 with a reduced fleet of 1,000 bicycles for ...

Pedaling Po-Po 2

All photos by James D. Schwartz / The Urban Country When it comes to cycling, Toronto is not at the world stage. So with the eyes of the world on Toronto this week for the G20 summit of world leaders, Toronto will not be showcasing its cycling culture. But despite this, Toronto is doing something ...

A Beautiful Morning in Toronto 2

All photos by James D. Schwartz / The Urban Country It seems like ages since I posted a “Winter Cycling in Toronto” article featuring me riding my bike on a blistering cold January day. Summer is here now and there are swarms of people riding bikes for transportation now in Toronto. Despite our poor infrastructure, ...

Wear a Helmet And Get a Cycling Utopia 15

[Photo] This photo of a “frivolous and reckless” Santa Monica cyclist courtesy of Bike by the Sea Shawn Micallef recently wrote an article on the Spacing.ca Toronto blog where he argues that anyone who wants better bicycle infrastructure in Toronto should wear a helmet if they expect to be taken seriously. Micallef claims that anyone ...

Why Do Cyclists Blow Stop Signs? 13

All photos by James D. Schwartz I came across this unique stop sign while walking the dog at the Exhibition grounds here in Toronto. It is a regular stop sign outfitted with a secondary stop sign that reads “CYCLISTS MUST STOP”. The implicit message that I gather from this stop sign is that regular stop ...

Bicycles for Transporting… [fill in the blank] 6

All photos by James D. Schwartz / The Urban Country Earlier this month I posted 30 photos of Utility Cycling in China. That post generated a lot of interest because like me, you are probably intrigued by how the Chinese use their bicycles for practical purposes – like pizza delivery, garbage pickup, cargo shipping, etc. ...

Shanghai Cycle Chic 10

All photos by James D. Schwartz / The Urban Country During my recent trip to China I was fortunate enough to spend a few days in Shanghai. Before I went to China, I promised Mikael Colville-Andersen that I would snap some photos of “Cycle Chic” action while biking around Shanghai. Mikael popularized the term “Cycle ...

Pedaling Haikou City, China 5

Video by James D. Schwartz / The Urban Country Have you ever wondered what it’s like to ride a bike in China? The short film above shows footage of me pedaling around Haikou City yesterday – the capital of the province of Hainan, China. Haikou’s population is somewhere around 1 million people – and I’d ...

Utility Cycling in China 23

All photos by James D. Schwartz / The Urban Country (May 2010) In big Chinese cities – like it or not – bicycles are a vital ingredient to keep the cities moving. From pizza delivery, to painters, to garbage pickup, to cargo shipping, to transporting people – bicycles are everywhere in cities like Shanghai and ...

Handicap Bike Parking 14

Photo by James D. Schwartz / The Urban Country In Shanghai, there are a lot of bikes.. a LOT of bikes. With the high costs of car ownership, heavy pollution and traffic congestion, bikes are still a great alternative and you can quickly get around the city. However, bikes are still generally considered to be ...