Norway’s Bike Escalator

Biking, especially in major cities, is becoming more popular as the days go by. It is a great and not to mention fun form of exercise, plus it’s easy on the environment. Biking does however, have its uphill battles. Literally. Imagine working all day only to have to climb what seems like an endless mountain just to get home. Well the city of Trondheim, Norway says “Not in our town.” The recently updated CYCLOCABLE (formerly Trampe) is an escalator… for bikes! Designed to carry up to six riders at a time, you simply place your foot on a plate and enjoy the ride up at 4 mi (6.4 km) per hour.

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As you probably know, Elevator World, Inc. is located in Mobile, AL, USA. This part of our beautiful state is not exactly known for hills. Actually it’s more known for its lack of hills. That being said, I discussed this with a couple of colleagues in the office who are avid bike riders and we all quickly agreed that this is not needed here in Mobile. That is not the case elsewhere in the U.S. and the world. I know San Fransisco, CA, could certainly benefit from a CYCLOCABLE and as one of my colleagues pointed out, so could Montreal, Canada.

The French company SKIRAIL is responsible for the most recent update to the escalator and says it is “optimistic that cities in the U.S., Europe, Canada, and Asia will contract them to build similar bicycle escalators.”

Could YOUR city benefit? Let us know why! Also be sure to check out the video below to see it in action.

Curious as to how it works? (You know we were!) Visit the CYCLOCABLE website to find out!

Thanks for reading,

– Caleb

Photo of the Week

3029341-slide-s-shopping-12Don’t ask me why, but a recent FastCompany magazine article titled “Erie Photos of Abandoned Shopping Malls Show the Changing Face of Suburbia” caught my eye.  The article focuses on the failure of the economy in Cleveland, Ohio, which has lost half of its population since the malls were built in 1976.  Among the dying vegetation, broken glass and empty stores depicted in the photos were elevators and escalators, staples in malls all over the world.  According to the article, over the next couple of decades, as many as half of the malls in the U.S. may be abandoned.

Seph Lawless, author of the article, blames the economy, at least part of the shift also has to do with bad design. Fewer people want to live or shop in the suburbs, and fewer people want to spend their free time under depressing fluorescent lights indoors. If malls are going extinct, that’s just another opportunity to retrofit suburbia–either by building smarter, denser developments, like this new neighborhood built in a former mall parking lot, or by turning the land back into green space.

So, as we finally begin to see commercial construction slowly increase after years of difficult economic times, it seems malls may not be a part of this trend.  Oh how we will miss you Glamour Shots, mall walkers and shady cell phone cover salesman.

 

The Little Rat That Couldn’t

Caution:  You are about to watch a video of a rat stuck on an escalator.  It’s 1:09 long, it’s not exciting and it’s not very interesting.  But, it’s a Monday and it is related to the vertical transportation industry.

Maybe the little fella started his News Year’s resolution early – and he wasn’t the only one who needed to shed a few holiday pounds.