Southerly by David Haywood

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Southerly: One Hundred and Thirty-one Million Reasons to Copenhagenize Christchurch

389 Responses

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  • Lisa Black, in reply to JackElder,

    if it’s running the 11-speed Alfine rather than 8-speed, I’m going to start saving up.

    I understand that's the next release. Next year, perhaps.

    I understand the Linus isn't great quality. Not bad, by any stretch, but for a start welded rather than lugged like the Pashley, and not as comfortable to ride. Pashleys are good quality, generally, and I suspect that you, Jack, would notice the difference.

    Wellington • Since Jul 2010 • 61 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    Via Joshua Arbury's wonderful Transportblog. An inspiring video on the world's cities, innovative thinking, and climate.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2132 posts Report Reply

  • JackElder,

    In places where cycling is normal, you don’t wear lycra. Lycra is for people who want to minimise air resistance and sweat heavily. If it’s cold, you wear your jacket (the same one that you would wear if you were walking), if it’s slightly warmer, your jumper, a shirt, a t-shirt, and so on. There’s no “normal clothing”/“cycling clothing” divide. People simply wear their normal clothing while cycling. This works, even in cities with slopes.

    Actually, I mainly wear the lycra because it's really comfortable. Anyone who hasn't tried it: it makes a huge difference to the comfort.

    That said, I didn't own any lycra garments until my late 20s, and I did spend a lot of time cycling around various cities as a schoolkid. And yes, it's perfectly normal and entirely doable to cycle in normal clothes: I lycra up on my commute, but for anything under 10k it's not worth bothering with. There are some cycling-specific features that make clothes more useful - a long tail in the back of a jacket, to stop it riding up when you're bent forward, for instance; or the ability to squash a rain jacket down small so you can bung it in the bottom of your bag just in case. (I use and thoroughly recommend a Ground Effect rain jacket). But if you're not going to cane it, or not riding much of a distance, or not climbing serious hills... there's nowt wrong with just wearing normal clothes.

    Wellington • Since Mar 2008 • 708 posts Report Reply

  • stephen walker, in reply to George Darroch,

    i agree, but only if:
    a) it doesn't rain
    b) the temperature stays below about 22C
    c) you are riding less than 10km or so each way.

    also, if it's sunny or quite humid or there are several hills you want a slightly lower air temp to stay not-too-sweaty.

    i used to do a 20km commute in 50 mins. even when it was cold i sweated a lot. there weren't many hills. sometimes it rained on the way home. so i needed to wear cycling gear. these days, i do a 17km commute in 55 mins in ordinary clothes and i only do it if i am really confident it is not going to rain. and i don't ride if the temp is over about 24C. and i ride more slowly. so yes, it can be done either way. for people going much shorter distances, the need for cycling gear is very low. if you wear ordinary work clothes you just have to be much more willing to change plans depending on the weather. the cycling gear means you can ride whatever the weather thows at you (more or less).

    nagano • Since Nov 2006 • 633 posts Report Reply

  • Lisa Black, in reply to JackElder,

    Pashley do good bikes, but that’s a hell of a lot of money for an ironic retro singlespeed.

    BTW, I might be wrong but I think the Guvnor is a model they've been making since the year dot.

    Wellington • Since Jul 2010 • 61 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Duncan McKenzie,

    My clients are delighted, Auckland Council a little stunned, and NZTA rather grumpy.

    There is a lot that could go wrong (NZTA could appeal on a point of law, Auckland Council fail to meet its obligations and forfeit the money), but here’s hoping…

    You bloody champion, Duncan. Fingers crossed.

    Give the overall cost of the project, the reluctance to just do the sensible thing -- which NZTA has actually done in recent years -- and continue the cycleway along with the motorway was daft.

    I actually think the perceived shape of Auckland is going to change when people start using these paths. It's easy enough to ride from Pt Chev to Onehunga now, and it's going to get a lot easier.

    Apologies for hijacking a thread about another city that needs more love than we do ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18824 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Like David I work at the University and the thing that stops me riding in more often is concerns about bike security. I don't feel comfortable leaving my bike in a stand - even with a decent lock. The university has about 10 vertical cages that you can use, but not much chance of getting them.

    I used to have a big office that I just put my bike in one corner of and no one seemed to mind, but I don't really have an office any more, and certainly no where to put a bike.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6164 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace, in reply to Lisa Black,

    Lisa, thanks for those offers about learning to ride a bike. Wasn't for me personally. I can ride a bike having learnt on holiday in flat Hamilton when I was young. But I lived on a steep Wellington hillside and every house had lots of steps and hardly anyone had bikes (trolleys and the first generation skateboards were the wheels of choice). But I am often coming across adults who have never learnt to ride (just like others who have never learnt to swim). Much harder to learn as an adult. So good to hear some groups are on to it.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 2074 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    One good thing about not learning to ride a bike. You will never forget how to fall off!

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1494 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Alice Ronald,

    Lycra shorts that seem to enrage car drivers.

    They just Scream "Hit Me" don't they?
    It cant be an Underwear Comfort thing, surely?

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4783 posts Report Reply

  • Greg Dawson,

    As far as I can tell, the thread has touched on it but danced away in other (more intersting) directions... I really find it difficult to contemplate going back to the cycling I used to do while growing up because apparently now you can't really ride a bike without buying a superman outfit and being Serious about Cycling.

    WTF? Can we have a thing where we just got to a place in a practical manner without turning it into some middle class proof of worth exercise?

    It seems like we've developed some sort of hyper-competitive "people who cycle to work" culture which requires escalating fanciness of machine with increasingly competitive lycra to match. Terrifying, frankly. God, I'm too young to think about "those times we did a thing without it being a big deal".

    That said, I read too much into everything.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 231 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Hilary Stace,

    I am often coming across adults who have never learnt to ride (just like others who have never learnt to swim).

    Add that to a growing list.
    Who, these days can repair anything? who can change a tap washer or a tyre. Or repack a flange or even rewind an armature?
    Things have come to a pretty pass I tell you.
    I blame Ann Tolley.

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4783 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    am often coming across adults who have never learnt to ride (just like others who have never learnt to swim).

    Add that to a growing list.

    Bike riding (but not horse riding) was pretty universal for a certain couple of generations (my mother's & mine, since you so kindly asked.) Swimming was a given - it was compulsory at primary school. Repacking flanges & rewinding armatures ? Ur, not so much BUT

    I've come across, over the last 3 months, people, of all genders, under the age of 20 who dont know how to cook!

    They dont know how to do anything (well, microwave, yessss.) Boiling eggs - let along poaching or omletting them - fuck o dear*


    *One of the now in-excess-of-30-encounterees did know how to set up an umukai/hangi. That's -something. I suppose.

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart, in reply to stephen walker,

    so yes, it can be done either way. for people going much shorter distances, the need for cycling gear is very low. if you wear ordinary work clothes you just have to be much more willing to change plans depending on the weather. the cycling gear means you can ride whatever the weather thows at you (more or less).

    If the average Chch commute is 5km, not a problem at all. I never bothered with anything like "cycling clothes", just rain jackets that gave decent coverage for splatter and taking note of how much I needed to bundle up. If you're only on the road for 20min, weather changes on the way in to work are very unlikely to be unforeseeable, and on the way home - well, you can shower at home, so no big deal whatever it is. Lycra is really very unnecessary for the majority of people.

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Russell Brown,

    You bloody champion, Duncan. Fingers crossed.

    Give the overall cost of the project, the reluctance to just do the sensible thing -- which NZTA has actually done in recent years -- and continue the cycleway along with the motorway was daft.

    I believe the civil disobedience of GetAcross paid off too.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4233 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    Add that to a growing list.
    Who, these days can repair anything? who can change a tap washer or a tyre. Or repack a flange or even rewind an armature?

    The PEBKAC society beckons. >:(

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4233 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart, in reply to Islander,

    I've come across, over the last 3 months, people, of all genders, under the age of 20 who dont know how to cook!

    They dont know how to do anything (well, microwave, yessss.) Boiling eggs - let along poaching or omletting them - fuck o dear*

    Cooking is one of those things that requires a reasonable amount of trial and error - which can be wasteful and/or tedious - or someone who teaches you the basic techniques. If they've managed to get out of home without learning the basics, they're not going to pick them up unless they make an effort to learn - and when there's so many tinned pasta sauces and microwave rice packets and things around...you don't really need to learn.

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

  • Jake Pollock, in reply to Greg Dawson,

    WTF? Can we have a thing where we just got to a place in a practical manner without turning it into some middle class proof of worth exercise?

    Wear what you want my friend. Frankly the lycra brigade is just happy to see other people on bikes.

    (That said, what Jack said about dedicated cycling clothing being more comfortable for longer rides is 100% correct. People who cycle longer distances for exercise and recreation aren't wearing it to annoy you, just as people who wear running shoes to go jogging aren't trying to frighten off people who are running to catch a bus.)

    Raumati South • Since Nov 2006 • 489 posts Report Reply

  • Raf Manji,

    This is a great read. I couldn't imagine a city more suited to cycling than Christchurch. Our new CERA boss is a mad keen cyclist so expect that to be at the top of the agenda. Also pretty cool that we had 4 different reps from Copenhagen around the TEDxEQChCh conference. They all stand at the ready to help us out. There is a lovely synergy and relationship between the 2 cities which we can expand upon.

    Christchurch • Since Jun 2007 • 14 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    The sad thing about Hayward, being an engineering sciency type of guy, is that he searches out evidence and demands it be used to justify policy decisions.

    He's number two of a soon to be growing crowd hopefully.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1494 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd, in reply to Greg Dawson,

    apparently now you can't really ride a bike without buying a superman outfit and being Serious about Cycling.

    I ride in my work clothes, as most of the commuters I see do. I have a carrier and panniers for my lunch and rain gear and paraphernalia, and my right trouser cuff tucked into my sock. I joke that I've turned into the middle-aged maths teacher I had as a kid.

    I think that as cycling dwindled through the 90s and 00s, the last cyclists left were sporty ones and young male ones (often the same people, of course) and bike marketing has yet to really grow out of catering to that reliable hard core and wooing all the kinds of people who used to ride when I were a lad in the 70s.

    It's as though car ads and depictions of drivers in the media only ever featured racing and rally drivers (although to be fair, they disproportionately do anyway, given how few motorists actually race).

    Anyway there's nothing stopping you getting a simple cheap bike and riding at all. Who's going to laugh at you? Not me, or anyone here.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2948 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Are you all seaty comftibold
    two-square on your botty?
    *

    In places where cycling is normal,
    you don’t wear lycra...

    ... thus began the rise of
    The Lycra©anthropes.**

    First, normalcy shot up from
    a dime a dozen to the almost
    unaffordable $20 a dozen -
    things were tight all over...
    - the carbon-fibrous era was
    upon us, an extinction loomed.

    ...at first they were neither here nor there
    just inbetween – on long stretches,
    then they were just where they were,
    and then, then they were everywhere!

    ...and they definitely weren't
    in the middle-of-the-road...

    </whimsy>


    *thanks to Stanley Unwin

    **apologies if I've said all this before...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4843 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Ross Mason,

    Nominal fail...

    The sad thing about Hayward...

    ..is that he is a spelling mistake,
    Mr Haywood, like Google,
    takes two Ohs...

    yrs
    Crowd Source Cloud Proofreader
    ;-)

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4843 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    I'm thinking you mean the wonderful Gallic invention, the Vélosolex rather than the home conversions...

    I saw about 4 of those on TradeMe yesterday. But they're quite a bit better than a standard bicycle conversion.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8450 posts Report Reply

  • Greg Dawson,

    Thank-you all for the kind reassurances regarding attire. I may just have to do what you suggest and pick up a casual bike, I miss ambling about (that and my recent move to a suburb that is not perched precariously just below the sky makes it more likely I'll use the thing).
    Although, maybe I'll explore the electric assist bikes a bit. Gadgets are shiny, after all.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 231 posts Report Reply

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