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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A unique insight into an emerging cultural change, 25 Nov 2010
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This review is from: Pedaling Revolution: How Cyclists are Changing American Cities (Paperback)
If you're a European, and you tend to think of the States as being populated by well-fed sedentary people driving enormous gas-guzzling SUVs, then prepare to have your prejudices exploded by this book.

Jeff Mapes commutes by bike to his job in downtown Portland, Oregon, and he isn't the only one. In many towns and cities in the U.S. people are re-discovering that cycling is a practical, low-cost, healthy way to get around, and as the numbers of cyclists grow, so the pressure for better cycling infrastructure and facilities grows with it. At the same time, the cost and pollution caused by traffic congestion are increasingly seen as negative by city authorities.

The result is a recipe for a renaissance in cycling in the States, which the author examines with a thorough and incisive eye. Mapes is a political journalist, so this book is written in a lucid and professional style that nonetheless doesn't subdue his evident passion for cycling.

His conclusions catch the zeitgeist particularly well:

". . . I see how learning to ride my bike in the city has changed my life. I still have a car and I still appreciate its utility. But I don't worry about high gas prices, road congestion or the lack of parking downtown. My car has become just another tool that I often don't need. Cars no longer have status in my mind. Once you spend most of your time on a bike, the difference between a Toyota Corolla and a BMW seems insignificant."

This book is probably unique, in the fact that it chronicles the beginnings of a cultural change in America which would have seemed impossible only a few years ago.

Highly recommended for city dwellers everywhere.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book., 25 Jan 2012
This review is from: Pedaling Revolution: How Cyclists are Changing American Cities (Paperback)
This has totally changed the way I view cycling. I now commute to work and it is working for me - so much happier and shedding the pounds (whilst eating more!) I live in Singapore where cycling is a "dirty word" and I think I would actually move to Copenhagen/Amsterdam/London/Davis just to cycle more.
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