Mayor Miller got the chance to spin around on a "Copenhagen wheel" while at the global climate change negotiations. The Mayor is reported as saying he'd like to make biking and walking a priority for Toronto. What that means: bike lanes, snow clearing for cyclists, and priority green lights for bikes:
Most of the other mayors are nearly unrecognizable, hidden as they are behind scarves and hats and tightly wrapped coats. But he even wears his Toronto Football Club scarf loosely. “I feel at home in this weather,” he said.
And so do the bikers of Copenhagen. Because the local government clears the bike paths of snow before or at the same time that they clear the roads. Just like they get a green light in crossings before the cars do.
“In Copenhagen, biking and walking has priority, and I would like to take that back to Toronto,” David Miller said. Another thing he wants to take home is the windmills.
The bike Miller is riding looks distinctly "un-European" and more like a North American fixie-fetish. And the reason for that is, because it is: the red button wheel, called the "Copenhagen Wheel" was designed at MIT as an e-assist hub that regenerates from braking and stores it in the battery inside the big hub. It's definitely a cool idea, but perhaps over-the-top for what's needed in flat Copenhagen. The wheel alone will likely cost a few thousand dollars.
By the way, the Mayor has been a mini-hero in my books at this summit: accepting the Fossil awards on behalf of the feds, and pushing the idea that cities can do much to reduce greenhouse gases while national governments seem to be kowtowing to fossil-fuel-loving big business.