~posted by Selby
Can biking save our economy? This is the main question that Elly Blue tackles in her book Bikenomics: How Bicycling Can Save the Economy. I was skeptical when I picked up the book. I, like so many people, see biking as a recreational activity or a way to help save the environment. But the economy? However, after reading this book I think Elly Blue may be onto something.
Blue does a thorough job of breaking down the current cost of our car obsession, not only in how much we pay for the cars, gas and roads to drive them on, but also in our levels of stress and general health. She then shows how building more bike infrastructure so that people bike more often can reduce healthcare costs and improve general well-being.
Seattle is poised to be a great city to cycle in with the recently updated Seattle Bicycle Master Plan creating protected bike lanes known as cycle tracks and making it possible to get anywhere in the city quickly and safely by bike. It may take some time but Blue argues that every improvement in bike infrastructure is also improving our health, our communities and saving us money. Not a bad deal in my mind.
But even if you are not a bikeaholic, or never plan to ride anywhere, this book is still a fascinating read and will make you think about our transportation choices in a new light.