Byrne on Mapes’ Pedaling Revolution

I’ve been planning on picking up a copy of Jeff Mapes’ Pedaling Revolution: How Cyclists Are Changing American Cities, so I was pleased to see that David Byrne (yes, that David Byrne) reviewed the book for the New York Times’ Sunday Book Review. Here’s an excerpt:

“Pedaling Revolution” is not all facts and figures. Mapes, a journalist who covers politics for The Oregonian, describes how he gained weight and started feeling a bit down when he was forced to exchange his 10-mile daily bike commute in Portland for a “super-sized, 50-mile” drive to the Legislature in Salem. He argues that cycling promotion can raise society’s level of general fitness, since people exercise more when it seems less like exercise and more like something mostly enjoyable that also performs a function, like getting to work. “Bike and walking advocates,” he writes, “have been rebranding their cause as ‘active transportation,’ which manages to come off as nonthreatening to your average couch-bound American while carrying a nice touch of gravitas as well.”

It looks like a good read for anyone interested in bicycling for transportation.

Read the full review in the NYT
Pedaling Revolution @ Amazon

2 Responses to “Byrne on Mapes’ Pedaling Revolution”

  • Iain says:

    I picked up a copy a couple of weeks back and yes its written in a readable and often humerous style that conveys the facts and fun that can be had using “alternative” transport. I really enjoyed the sections about the history behind Portland and NYC’s subtle but over time quite effective changes. He also references both Amsterdam and Copenhagen in the European view, and compared to the UK too, they are leagues ahead. A good read for those that have more than a passing interest in using bikes for more than recreational transport.

  • Lyle says:

    Yes, it’s an excellent read. He covered vehicular cycling and separated cycling quite well. It’ll be interesting to see how the US deals with this issue in the coming decade.

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