- a collection of notes and reflections on urban living from the perspective of a family of five in Tokyo. My epiphany was many years ago, but being hit by a motorbike and seeing my life flash before my eyes caused a sudden change that slowly made me reflect on whether American style auto-centric urban transportation of the Roosevelt era really is a capital G "Good Idea" for civilized modern cities in the 21st Century. This blog explores the good and the bad in urban planning and design, here and elsewhere. The goal is simple - not "death to all cars," just more walkable communities, quiet tree-lined streets, good public transport, traffic calming, Velib style bicycle sharing and a bit of common sense. The bolg is mostly theraputic, so I don't go wanting to throttle every dangerous driver I come across, but partly also out of a real desire to see positive change. This blog explores how it can be done, the people who do it, and how, in many small ways, this very old idea may at last have found its zeitgeist. Comments and suggestions welcome.

Friday, April 02, 2010

Kuroneko Delivery Bicycles with Trailers

I had been meaning to upload something about the Kuroneko electric bike + delivery trailer system, but found this, so I am just going to show you this gentleman's video instead.

The system itself has been around for a few years now. I thought it was only rolled out in the inner city where streets are narrow and fairly dense, but it looks like they are doing it elsewhere also, which is great.

As some readers will know, my wife and I used a Japanese electric bicycle + child trailer for several years to take the kids around town without a car and it was really fantastic. I sometimes wonder how good these trailer hitches on the Kuroneko trailers are so high up under the seat there, but the kuroneko guys seem to use them just fine.

There are a number of other companies that also use electric bicycles and trailers in Japan these days and it is fantastic to see. It really does save these companies a bucket load of money, is good for the environment, and keeps the couriers very fit. I have seen them running mountain races in their uniforms - rightfully proud of their extra fitness.