Hometransalt.org
Bicycle Blueprint
Introduction

NYC Cycling
1. NYC Bike Policy
2. State of NYC Cycling
3. Cyclists & Streets
A Bike and a Prayer


Riding Infrastructure
4. Street Design
5. Bridges
6. Road Surfaces
7. Greenways
8. Parks
9. Bicycles and Transit
10. Reducing Traffic


Security
11. Bicycle Theft
12. On-Street Parking
13. Indoor Parking


On the Job Cycling
14. Bicycle Messengers
Fifth, Park & Madison
Freight Cycles
16. Gov't Cycling


Reducing Risks
17. Accidents
Three Who Died
18. Air Pollution


Bicycle Education
19. Schools
20. Public Education


Appendices

      Chapter 15:
Freight Cycles
 Efficient Deliveries
b) Working Models in NYC
c) Additional Uses for Freight Cycles
d) Hauling Household Gear | Freight and Asian Pedal Power
e) Chapter 15 Recommendations
Figure 15: Center for Appropriate Transport

Efficient Deliveries

Delivery bicycles and tricycles have been getting packages around New York City for over a century. Currently, they are used primarily, and heavily, for food delivery — by Chinese restaurants, pizza parlors and grocery stores. Despite their obvious efficiency in New York traffic, some see these heavy-duty, human-power-driven cycles with their baskets and metal boxes as a throwback to an earlier time — low-tech, even “third-world.”

The truth is that for most kinds of city deliveries, it's cars, vans and trucks that are inappropriate technology, a relic of some mythical time when traffic flowed smoothly and swiftly through the streets of Manhattan.

In midtown Manhattan, motor traffic moves at an average speed of less than 7 miles per hour, [1] and 90% of parcels delivered weigh 30 pounds or less. [2] Motor vehicles are bulky and oversized for much freight delivery, as well as costly to buy and run, and expensive and time-consuming to park. These are just the costs and inconveniences to the delivery business itself, not taking into account the costs and inconveniences to the city at large: a loss of public street space to vehicles; traffic tie-ups from double-parking; and the pollution, congestion and noise that are inherent with fossil-fueled motor vehicles, particularly large ones making frequent stops.

Certainly many motorized delivery trucks and vans carry loads too large or heavy for human-powered vehicles. But if companies and government are willing to see human-powered vehicles (HPVs) as a serious and viable complement to other freight haulers, they certainly could ease the environmental burdens created by large trucks. Many companies employ one or several vans, which are loaded up in the morning and spend all day in traffic making deliveries. For a far smaller investment, a company could buy a fleet of cycles and send them out simultaneously. A side benefit would be the creation of more jobs. The cycles could also give the company a higher profile and a reputation for innovation.

NOTES:
1. New York City Dept. of Transportation, Recent Trends in Traffic Volumes and Transit Ridership, August 1991, p. 12. 1990 average midtown auto speeds were 9.0 mph on avenues and 5.9 mph on streets.
2.  City Cyclist, May/June 1990, “Bikes That Deliver.”


 Efficient Deliveries
b)
Working Models in NYC
c) Additional Uses for Freight Cycles
d) Hauling Household Gear | Freight and Asian Pedal Power
e) Chapter 15 Recommendations
Figure 15: Center for Appropriate Transport

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