Ask the Experts: Why Is US Bike Culture So Different From Europe's?

Michael Mandiberg/CC BY-SA 2.0

Why is the U.S. so different from Europe when it comes to bike culture and is it something that we can change?

Elizabeth Press from Streetfilms answers:

"The U.S. differs from Europe so much because we have indulged in our car addictions much longer than most European countries have. Look at a place like the Netherlands. We can all agree that they are super bike friendly. But they don't have perfect weather for biking year-round.  So, how did they get this way? They had the foresight and political will forty years ago to acknowledge the harmful effects of the automobile on urban centers. They chose to change and not allow the car to monopolize their cities. They chose to plan for people. Here in the U.S. we are starting to realize the importance of giving priority to cyclists and pedestrians. We are on our way to making our cities more livable for all. And, our bike culture will surely grow with this shift."

Elizabeth Press is a media maker at Streetfilms, which you can follow on Twitter @Streetfilms. You can follow Elizabeth's "non-streetfilms endorsed" tweets too, @eeepee.

© Elizabeth Press

Tags: Ask The Experts | Bike-Friendly World | Biking | Urban Life | Urban Planning

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