Here’s a fascinating look at… hmmmmm… what to call this? The future? A future?
In any case, vehicle design student Marten Wallgren and his group recently won a Seymour Powell award for best concept in the “Future City Mobility” competition. They created a city system in which a futuristic bicycle is at the heart of an integrated transportation system including buses and taxis.
You will find much larger image files on his MWBlog that explain the concepts. Fascinating stuff.
Here’s what I’m wondering: While I admire Wallgren’s creative imagination, why change the bicycle so radically? (Yes, I get that it is necessary to the system as designed.)
I’m wondering if it might be possible to design a similar vision that requires less tinkering with a tried-and-true design and more tinkering with the big, dirty, and dangerous machines that are making big cities hell in the first place.
I get that he’s also created an energy system. That’s very cool.
Another thing that makes me wonder: How appealing would such a system really be given the individualistic nature of bicycling. Where is the personal style? Where is the self-expression? Where is the hot pink cruiser with a woven basket full of flowers?
What’s great about this system is that I think we can take the central idea and begin thinking realistically about implementation of no-car, low-car policies for big cities using the bicycle as it stands. We can begin to think about how to make other forms of transportation integrate with the bicycle instead of the bicycle integrate with other forms of transportation.
Science fiction? No. Sadly it is political fiction.
(via Bicycle Design)