Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Council permits and Pedicabs

I wonder what drives local Council bylaws in relation to Pedicabs?
Obviously they perceive Pedicabs and Rickshaws as some kind of threat to the public amenity; but why?

In Cities all around the world traffic congestion is a huge problem. Councils look for ways to make their cities more people friendly by installing walking streets and malls. Speed limits are reduced and roads are transformed to one way only traffic or obstacles are sometimes inserted to prevent traffic from encroaching on pedestrian space.
Surely a great solution to transportation within congested city centers would be the wholesale adoption of man powered environmentally friendly transport. In cities such as Singapore the bicycle Rickshaws are considered an attraction. Rickshaw travel enables people to engage with their environment and reduces the potential for serious collisions between vehicles and pedestrians in built up areas. They are an ideal option for transporting tourists who may wish to visit shopping areas that are often just beyond comfortable walking distance.

On the weekend we visited the Wharf precinct which is currently under construction. There were many cars that had to turn around because of lack of parking space close to the wharf and the road onto the wharf was full of cars just idling along. I am sure there must have been many people who just gave up and went home. This would have been a perfect opportunity to set up a ferry system between the Wharf and the further car parks as a service to elderly people or those who could not walk that distance. I would like to arrange a business along these lines but am unsure of how my local council will react. Articles I have read do nothing but confirm that Councils the world over are obsessed with restricting the use of rickshaws on public roads. I just don't get this. I plan to make some inquiries this week but am a little weary of giving them any reason to refuse me.

There were a couple of interesting articles over the past couple of days one of which related to what I am talking about. Check out this link in The Oxford Student.

And India-e-news has a story on rickshaws that gives some scope to the aesthetics of the machine. Cycle rickshaws: Poor man's lifeline in Bangladesh

Blogger post Merepek

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1 comment:

nyonyapenang said...

Hi David,

I just popped by and my, you have on blog specifically for rickshaws and the like? This is interesting. I shall come back to slowly read through your posts.

Thanks so much for putting my humble link here. I appreciate it very much.

You have a great day. :)