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MTRC’s recent strict enforcement of baggage dimension rules, under which students with cellos and other larger musical instruments have been kicked off trains (SCMP, Ming Pao, Sun), and the resulting public backlash have made some people ask about the situation for passengers with bikes.

Most of us know that since 2011 (as well as until 2003), bikes have been accepted on all MTR services.  Passengers with bikes have widely shown responsibility, such as by not trying to get on a really crowded train.

But this arrangement has never quite been the bold step forward for Hong Kong and the MTR that it should have been.

Here’s what Hong Kong Cycling Alliance submitted to MTRC’s review:

Bicycle Carriage on MTRC Services

Alongside recent concerns over passengers bringing musical instruments on to MTR services, occasional reference has been made to MTRC’s acceptance of bicycles on all services, as announced by your Mr Cheung Sing-chau, at the 16 December 2011 meeting of Government departments with cycling organisations, under the auspices of Transport Department.

Firstly, and importantly, I reiterate the consistent position of Hong Kong Cycling Alliance (HKCAll) that the step taken by MTRC was very welcome and deserving of praise and publicity, as forward-looking, environmentally responsible and aligned with the global trend towards integration of bicycle use with public transport, under policies that increasingly promote transportational and leisure cycling.

We note that, in the nearly four years since the policy was introduced:

It has proven popular with bicycle owners and smooth in operation, subject to our further comment below

It has been uncontroversial with the general public, indeed, support has been widely expressed, over that time and in public comments recently

There are however two areas in which we believe the present arrangements regarding carriage of bicycles could be improved:

Keeping bikes whole

The directive to frontline staff to request the disengagement of one wheel of a bicycle creates needless risk and inconvenience. Furthermore it does not match practice among local train service operators elsewhere.

Even when wheel removal is possible, by taking away the stability and braking system of the bike, rendering it into several large parts, and exposing potentially sharp points in a public space, this requirement turns a safely controllable object into an unwieldy and potentially dangerous inconvenience for all concerned. It also introduces the possibly fatal risk that brakes may not be reset properly.

Moreover the restriction prevents the use of MTR services by most ordinary people, with non-specialised bikes, who are unable to comply.

The lack of a clear rationale for these requests to remove a wheel causes confusion among passengers and MTR staff. Staff often cite By-law 4A but this was surely superseded by the December 2011 announcement. Partial references to dimensions regulations cannot apply, as regular-size bicycles are clearly an exception. Concerns about safety and convenience are best met by keeping the bike whole and manoeuvrable. Fears that passengers with bikes are somehow more irresponsible than everyone else, and might mount their bikes, are unfounded and such an action would anyway be covered by existing regulations.

We urge the withdrawal of the expectation that a passenger with a bicycle disengage one of its wheels.

Broader publicity

The lack of public information about the acceptance of bikes for travel on MTR services leaves many ordinary bike users unaware of, or uncertain about, the arrangements in place, especially affecting those who are not members of clubs and associations that share such information.

Suitable promotion of this availability would not only clarify matters for everyone, but also draw appreciation of MTRC’s welcome responsible policy and environmental credentials.

HKCAll would be delighted to provide further input on these matters, or to meet with MTRC to discuss implementing such improvements, as well as other cycling issues related to MTR services.

Thank you for your attention.

On the day that acceptance of review submissions closed, MTRC announced that it would introduce a system whereby some instruments, such as cellos, could be registered for carriage, off-peak.  Mention was made of possible later consideration of sports equipment (pool cues?  hockey sticks?) but no reference to bikes.  That leaves many questions unanswered, for other musicians, as well as anyone carrying sports gear, and, perhaps, anyone with a bike. (HKFP, SCMP, Sun)

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香港城市單車騎行問卷調查

你好!我們是賽馬會低碳創聚的單車創新小組,宗旨為推廣香港單車騎行,成員由香港單車同盟3+1單車同學會及幾位單車愛好者組成。

單車有著隨騎即行、靈活、環保低碳、佔用路面空間少等優點,在其他國家,如荷蘭、德國、美國紐約等大行其道,同時亦有以單車代替公共交通的趨勢。

 

我們希望透過這份問卷收集香港居民對於巿區騎行的看法及意見,同時召集更多有心人關注城市單車騎行相關議題。以下請你用3分鐘時間完成問卷,讓我們了解並分析騎行人士的看法及意見。

Questionnaire on Cycling in Hong Kong

Hi! We are a bike InnoTeam from the Jockey Club CarbonCare Open Innovation Lab (JCCOIL) formed by Hong Kong Cycling Alliance (HKCAll), 3+1 Cycling Group and cycling enthusiasts.

Bike has the merit of hop-and-ride, high manoeuvrability, environmental friendly, use less road space, and more. There is a trend for countries and cities like the Netherlands, Germany and New York to replace public transport by cycling.

 

We hope to collect views and opinions from you all who residents in Hong Kong on cycling in urban area. Meanwhile, we would like to call for attention from public on this topic. This questionnaire will take you about 3 minutes to complete, we will use such data collected for our analysis on cyclists views and opinions.

 

中文版

https://goo.gl/3qr04x

 

English version

https://goo.gl/ghQIbt

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Ride of Silence 2015

April 21st, 2015 | Posted by Nick Andrew in general cycling - (0 Comments)

RoS2015_Poster-1F_Web (1)All cyclists are invited to ride together to remember and support all those who died or were injured while cycling in Hong Kong in 2014, and to quietly make the statement that “we are here” and deserve respect and consideration. This is one of hundreds of such rides around the world at the same time, annually on the third Wednesday in May.
This year 2015 is our 10th Ride of Silence in Hong Kong.
邀請所有騎單車人仕一同踏單車去紀念2014年在香港死亡或受傷的單車使用者,以沉默騎行的方式宣告「我們存在」及應受到尊重及在規劃中應被考慮。這是世界各地數以百計同樣的集體單車騎行活動之一,於每年五月第三個星期三舉行。
本年2015年是香港第十屆沉默的騎行。

Route: TST Clock Tower (Starting point) > eastbound Salisbury Road > northbound Nathan Road > westbound Lai Chi Kok Road > northbound Wong Chuk St > westbound Yu Chau St > southbound Yen Chow St > eastbound Lai Chi Kok Road > southbound Nathan Road > TST Clock Tower (Finishing point)
(https://www.google.com.hk/maps/ms?msid=205028531437179213159.0004dc0e8558e0d5fb974&msa=0)

Police will inspect bikes for lights (front and back) and brakes, and probably reflectors and bells. Please be prepared.
Reminder: please let’s ride quietly or in silence as we remember others
Bad Weather: We’ll continue under Amber or Red rainstorm warning signal. Event will be postponed to another date if Black rainstorm warning signal is in force or in prospect.

路線:尖沙咀鐘樓(起點) > 梳士巴利道東行 > 彌敦道北行 > 荔枝角道西行 > 黃竹街北行 > 汝洲街西行 > 欽州街南行 > 荔枝角道東行 > 彌敦道南行 > 尖沙咀鐘樓(終點)
https://www.google.com.hk/maps/ms?msid=205028531437179213159.0004dc0e8558e0d5fb974&msa=0

請檢查單車裝備是否合法:包括法例要求的燈(前面和後面)和剎車,並反光體和鈴鐺。警方將作檢查,請做好準備。
提示:請安靜及沉默地騎行去記念死傷者
惡劣天氣安排:大雨、黃雨、紅雨活動照常;而如果有或會有黑雨、八號或以上風球,活動會改期。

More information 更多資訊:http://hkcyclingalliance.org/

Global website 全球網站

For details of the hundreds of other Ride of Silence events around the globe, and the worldwide message that we are carrying, visit http://www.rideofsilence.org/ .

如要知道更多世界各地「沉默的騎行」的詳情及活動要表達的訊息,請前往全球「沉默的騎行」網站 http://www.rideofsilence.org/ 。

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The United States government is pressing city and local officials to develop and improve cycling practice and infrastructure, leveraging a trend that has seen US cities hurrying to catch up Europe and the rest of the world, after a slow start.

This stance, initiated in 2010 with support for the development of fully integrated active transportation networks, urges that cycling and walking “should be considered equally important as other transportation modes” and recognises the benefits of more people taking up active mobility.

A new Federal initiative – which the Hong Kong Transport Department could usefully study – focuses on the safety of people who walk or bike, under this transformative ‘Complete Streets‘ approach.

Mayors’ Challenge for Safer People and Safer Streets (January 2015)

 

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report最近紐約巿交通當局於2014年9月發表了一個報告,證明了在巿區建單車徑/單車行車線有助減少汽車行車時間,在巿區鼓勵用單車實際上方便了駕駛人仕。

香港交通諮詢委員會也於12月30日向運輸及房屋局提交了《香港道路交通擠塞研究報告》http://www.thb.gov.hk/tc/boards/transport/land/Full-Chi_C_cover.pdf(下簡稱《報告》),《報告》的第三章是有關現時處理道路交通擠塞的措施,其中3.4.5段:「有些人提倡以單車替代機動交通工具。儘管騎單車有環保效益,但本港市區道路普遍擠迫和繁忙,加上上落客貨活動頻繁,實在難以在不影響交通或道路使用者安全的情況下,在市區騰出合適地方興建單車徑。在行車道上騎踏單車的人士,亦會較容易因交通意外而受傷。2013年間,便有超過1 000宗涉及單車在行車道上發生的交通意外。因此,政府一般不鼓勵市民在市區以單車作為交通工具。相對於市區,交通流量密度較低的新市鎮或新發展區,較有條件讓單車作短途代步。就此,政府一直致力在新市鎮及新發展區締造「單車友善環境」,通過發展新的單車徑網絡和改善現有單車徑及單車停泊設施等,讓市民可以單車作短途代步或康樂用途。

以上的文字當然是我們耳熟能詳的政府反對單車作巿區交通的藉口,但作為一個研究交通擠塞的報告,當全世界各大小城巿大力推動單車特別是公共單車系統以協助解決交通擠塞問題,這報告竟然對單車解決交通擠塞的貢獻隻字不提,只引述政府的立場,口徑完全一致,而整個報告完全忽視如何發展單車這可持續的交通工具,本同盟對於這報告明顯的遺漏十分失望。

《報告》另一處有提及單車的地方,是:「4.6.13 泊車轉乘設施亦可提供予單車使用者,鼓勵他們接駁公共交通。工作小組知悉政府一直在新市鎮及新發展區的公共運輸交滙處和港鐵站附近提供單車泊位。小組建議政府在可行的情況下繼續加強這方面的工作。」這也是政府的老生常談,但卻是做得很少,其實不單在新市鎮及新發展區單車泊位不足,巿區跟本連合法單車泊位也是極之罕有或者欠奉。

而《報告》中應該提及單車的地方卻總是忽略了單車的存在,在4.3的問卷中問到巿民是否贊成政府給予某些交通工具優先使用道路權利,單車在問卷中被完全忽略,問卷未開始已經否定了單車是交通工具之一,這與單車在香港是合法交通工具的現況完全不乎,連在道路使用權的問卷問一下單車也好像是個禁忌似的,這是什麼交通報告?!是政府預設了否定單車作為交通工具的框架下的報告?報告對應用單車在可持續交通的期盼也完全沒有,可說連「袋住先」也說不上。單車作交通工具不單是「單車界」的事,是關乎城巿可持續發展的事,交通擠塞正為城巿的可持續性響起了警號,為何仍不向單車這最有效卻最可持續的交通工具找答案呢?
《報告》的結論指出:「香港是世界級的城市,一直竭力維持和提升競爭力。交通便利與否和空氣質素是兩項重要而相關的指標,用以界定一個城市是否適宜居住和具吸引力。因此,工作小組籲請社會各界人士齊心協力解決道路交通擠塞,維持香港的競爭力。」試問世界上有什麼交通工具比單車更便利並且對空氣質素最有益?

最後,可能有人以為單車在馬路上會阻礙汽車,甚至使塞車情況惡化,香港單車同盟曾經有一篇文章單車阻慢交通嗎?Are bicycles slowing down traffic?)作出了分析,也值得大家參考。
其實汽車才是塞車的原因,而政府在路面交通上以汽車主導,並以滿足駕駛人仕的需求為己任,處處為駕駛人仕著想解決問題,為保持汽車駕駛暢順及方便而用盡資源增加汽車可用的路面及便利,變相鼓勵使用私家車,這才是真正容讓塞車及廢氣破壞這城巿的主因。

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「香港單車同盟」最近應「健康空氣行動」(www.hongkongcan.org)的邀請,在深水埗一所中學教授踩單車知識及技巧。

在課程中我們教授了操控單車的基本技巧,及在一般馬路上踩單車的要點,同學學到了留意周遭環境及其他道路使用者的動向,在馬路上踩單車的基本位置,轉變行車線、如何應付路口等等知識及在模擬的道路環境中練習。

這類應用單車的訓練有助加強巿民日常運用單車的知識、信心及加強安全意識;而香港單車同盟很樂意分享我們的經驗讓更多人能享受單車的好處!

Martin Turner 正講解踩單車的知識↓

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練習↓

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一堂時間,由完全唔識學到識↓

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幾個月之前本網站做了一個有關日本單車友善的圖片報導,而日本京都在最近一次的單車友善排名全球第二,相信日本京都一定有值得觀摩及取經之處;筆者最近就親身體驗了在京都踩單車的情況,讓我報導一下:

 

京都有好幾家出租單車的公司,我用的這家叫Kyoto Eco Trip,能說一口流利英語的員工Ayako非常細心協助我們及講解在京都踩單車要注意的事情。背後的是電力輔助單車,在京都也見到不少人使用↓

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在日本(包括京都),在行人路上踩單車是合法及一貫的做法,而我所看到的單車徑/專用道,都在行人路上,(攝於五条通)↓

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而路上無專用單車徑時,踩單車的人就和行人共享空間。↓

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停泊單車的情況

路旁、大廈、商店及住宅都不難發現單車停泊設施↓

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商廈外的單車停泊設施↓

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住宅單車停泊設施↓

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而把單車隨便停在路邊,單車有可能被移走,車主要前往指定的地點交罰款2300日元取回單車。↓

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放在違規停泊單車上的提示↓

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除了可以在行人路及單車徑踏,還可以選擇在馬路上踏單車。↓

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公共單車

京都巿的公共單車,租金500日元2小時,1000日元24小時↓

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總的來說,京都雖然是汽車主導馬路的城巿,但因為有深厚的單車文化,及對使用單車者的尊重,並且讓單車可以和行人共享行人路,以致巿民可以方便及安全地用單車代步,在京都很常見到一般巿民、學生、長者、婦女使用單車代步,相反,穿著單車衣載頭盔的單車運動愛好者卻不常見到。

最近無線電視明珠台製作了一個有關京都單車文化的節目,值得一看:

http://mytv.tvb.com/news/pearlreport/193520

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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 日本人可以做的事;香港人卻不可以!!!

What Japanese can, Hong Kongers cannot!

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⇑在行人路踩單車;在香港會被檢控!

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⇑用單車載小孩子;在香港會被檢控!「在道路上騎單車或三輪車的人,不得運載─(a) 任何其他人」第374G章51條第(3)款

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⇑踩電力協助單車;在香港會被檢控!

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⇑把單車泊在有人看管的收費單車停車場;香港並無此設施!

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⇑把單車泊在街上收費停泊處;香港並無此設施!

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⇑把單車隨便泊在街上只需用一個很簡單的鎖具;在香港單車很快會被偷去!

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⇑在公園裡踩單車和行人共享空間;在香港會被檢控!

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⇑把單車合法泊在街上收費停泊處不怕被政府充公,政府只會針對非法泊車個別行動,不會影響其他合法停泊的單車;相片中紙條的意思是: 「(不當地停泊單車)已經對其他客戶造成滋擾,請正確地停泊單車」;在香港即使泊在合法單車位也有可能在政府的清理行動中被充公!

 

 

 

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Did you know that Bicycles were first mentioned in the English Language Hong Kong Newspapers on 11th May 1869?

It was a note about ‘velocipedeschools for ladies in brooklyn [USA]

Cycling in Hong Kong first appeared in the long-forgotten ‘Hong Kong Daily Press’ newspaper on the 18th February 1870.

1870-02-18The final heat of the bicycle race will take place today at 5pm on the road at the foot of the race course. The first and second in each of the heats will take part in the final.

And how did the race go..?… we find out in the HK Daily Press on the 19th February 1870:

1870-02-19The third and final heat was run yesterday afternoon, and as on the previous occasion, a very large crowd of spectators assembled to view the sport. Bush, Dawson and Smith came to the scratch, and got the word “go” with a fair and even start. Dawson at once took the lead, and went spinning round the course at a good smart pace; Smith and Bush following several yards behind. Once round in this order and Smith begins to press the leader for first place which he succeed in getting just over the bridge; Bush number two and Dawson falling behind. The race is now entirely between Smith and Bush, who are keeping close company until half round the course, where Bush “opens out”, passes Smith with ease, and literally runs away from him. The leader now had the race to himself and completed the third round without any difficulty, coming in a winner by many yards ahead of Smith, who gets second place. Dawson nowhere.
The velocipede used by the winner is one of his own manufacture, a fact which shows that Hongkong is not very far behind the rest of the world in a manufacturing point of view

They were likely racing Penny-Farthings or similar as the ‘safety bicycle‘ was not invented until the 1880’s, which are more like the bikes that we recognise today.

 

 

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