Greater Greater Washington

Can a bike escalator help riders up 15th Street's steep hill?

DC will soon extend the 15th Street cycletrack north, but riders will have to puff up a very steep hill. Could that become easier with a piece of technology from Trondheim, Norway?

Comemnter mtpleasanter pointed this out in our discussion about the cycletrack.

This device, called a Trampe, is a long track where, on request, a small metal platform pops out at the bottom and glides up to the top at 3-4 miles per hour. A cyclist just places a foot on the platform and lets it push him or her up the hill.

The one in the video looks like it follows a straight line, but if it will work around curves, it could indeed be a great addition to the 15th Street cycletrack along Meridian Hill Park.

The Trampe requires people to pay using a special card they can buy or rent; that could help the device pay for itself, but the hassle of managing a payment system also would seem to be somewhat considerable. It might be better just to make it free and encourage more people to ride, which would cut down on car traffic and perhaps slightly de-congest the extremely crowded 16th Street buses.

Edited to add: There are also many other places around the region which could benefit from such devices. Rosslyn would be a prime candidate, for instance.

David Alpert is the founder and editor-in-chief of Greater Greater Washington. He worked as a Product Manager for Google for six years and has lived in the Boston, San Francisco, and New York metro areas in addition to Washington, DC. He now lives with his wife and daughter in Dupont Circle. 

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I would feel a bit silly doing that (memories of T-bars while skiing) but I would still use the hell out of it.

by BTA on Jul 3, 2014 10:33 am • linkreport

I bike all over the city, but living on top of that hill in Mt. P, it certainly is a disincentive, especially on hot days like we have been having. I know I would bike about 60% more if I knew I could avoid that short stretch of hill. (I know I can go over to 11th, which is way out of the way, or put the bike on a bus, but both those options are kind of a pain for something that is only a short nuisance).

by mtpleasanter on Jul 3, 2014 10:37 am • linkreport

If it were free I'd use it on occasion. If it cost anything, even a quarter, I'd skip the hassle and ride.

by sk on Jul 3, 2014 10:38 am • linkreport

And I thought the commenters from yesterday were joking...

by DaveG on Jul 3, 2014 10:39 am • linkreport

I think any way of collecting a fee for using it would be enough to discourage use. Not that people would balk at paying a quarter, but that people would balk at taking the time to pay a quarter.

I prefer the 15th St hill (steep but short) to 14th (lasts for like 10 blocks), but I know many disagree. Perhaps finally putting in a NB bike lane on 14th from Florida to Columbia, which I think we've been promised for a couple years now, would be a more cost-effective solution.

by Jon on Jul 3, 2014 10:50 am • linkreport

I'm all for it, but unless the DC version were to strap you're foot in or provide a hand-hold that moves with you, I don't think going around a bend would be wise. It would be very easy for someone's foot to slip off if they have no other way of holding on.

by David on Jul 3, 2014 10:52 am • linkreport

In the latest Rosslyn plan update there is a call for a public escalator (for pedestrians but you could maybe look into a bike fix as well).

by drumz on Jul 3, 2014 10:54 am • linkreport

Make the payment system part of the Metro smart trip card. The overhead and the complication of another system become manageable. This is just another part of the transit infrastructure.

by Bob Summersgill on Jul 3, 2014 10:57 am • linkreport

I've never tried the hill on 13th, but isn't it steeper?

by Crickey7 on Jul 3, 2014 10:59 am • linkreport

@drumz: at least at one postulated location for the public escalator, the site plan recently approved has a public elevator and stairs instead.

by Michael Perkins on Jul 3, 2014 11:01 am • linkreport

I really think that in this country and this environment, this is the sort of thing that leaves a group (cyclists) open to ridicule just by asking for it. Cycle lanes and better laws are great, and I'd prefer to just keep advocating for those.

I also wouldn't use it myself, but then I like hills.

by DE on Jul 3, 2014 11:12 am • linkreport

Is this 1st of April? Seriously, it's not exactly a long a hill, enact Rule #5 and just cycle up the thing.

by bajin on Jul 3, 2014 11:16 am • linkreport

The technology shown in the video is now defunct (and the 15th St hill just about exceeds the tram's maximum operating distance), but it's not a bad idea in a perfect world. I think for now, I will just walk my bike up the hill, which is only just a tad slower than the tram.

by Scoot on Jul 3, 2014 11:32 am • linkreport

@ Crickey7

According to Strava, 15th has an average gradient of 7.4% and 13th has an average gradient of 9.5%. Having ridden them both, I agree with that assessment. 13th is a tough bloody climb.

by CyclistinAlexandria on Jul 3, 2014 11:33 am • linkreport

With e-bikes coming of age, I don't think this is needed. Some of the new ebikes otherwise look and behave like a standard bike, and it's only going to become more common.

http://prodecotech.com/bikes/scorpion-27/

I thought I read that at least one country has ebikes in their bikeshare, too.

Anyway, this lift is an idea whose time has passed, I would say. Now, if they had an aircraft carrier style catapult for BRT (Bike Rapid Transit), I'm all in.

by The Truth™ on Jul 3, 2014 11:33 am • linkreport

Two words: first gear

by DaveG on Jul 3, 2014 11:38 am • linkreport

I was the one who brought up the topic yesterday, and I definitely was not joking!

I would pay annually for a card - say $10 or so or $5. Whatever.

Two words: over 30. Three: and sweat.

by Jazzy on Jul 3, 2014 11:47 am • linkreport

Make the payment system part of the Metro smart trip card. The overhead and the complication of another system become manageable. This is just another part of the transit infrastructure.

by Bob Summersgill

____

Excellent!

by Jazzy on Jul 3, 2014 11:48 am • linkreport

9.5%. The Alpe d' Huez has an average gradient of 8.1% and a maximum of 13%. The Manayunk Wall is also 13%.

Wimps.

by Crickey7 on Jul 3, 2014 11:51 am • linkreport

Of course, no one ever rides either of those in a CaBi.

by Crickey7 on Jul 3, 2014 11:53 am • linkreport

While it is desirable to make biking possible for all, from 8 to 80+ as the new FFX Bike plan says, and not everyone who can't do a steep hill has an ebike, it may be we need to wait for a much larger critical mass of cylists before something like this is politically viable.

by AWalkerInTheCity on Jul 3, 2014 11:53 am • linkreport

How do you know - I'm asking - that such a "critical mass" does not yet exist? I wonder if anyone even thought to ask. (Besides Richard Layman, on whose blog I first read about this 6 years ago.)

by Jazzy on Jul 3, 2014 11:55 am • linkreport

"Of course, no one ever rides either of those in a CaBi."

I've done the 15th St hill on CaBi, I've done it on a road bike pulling two kids in a trailer, I've done it with two packed panniers from the grocery store, and I've done it on an Xtracycle longtail. I wouldn't say any of those experiences were fun, but I've done them.

by Jon on Jul 3, 2014 11:55 am • linkreport

By then ebikes will be extremely common, and it will be impossible to justify the cost for those few who don't have or refuse to have one.

In short, this ain't never gonna happen.

by The Truth™ on Jul 3, 2014 11:57 am • linkreport

No, I'm seriously. This is a move too far that needs to go nowhere. Too many people right now are complaining about bicycle infrastructure that is actually needed. If something like this were built, it would be in the cross-hairs of every conservative, anti-government spending, anti-cyclist media type as an example of government overreach and the all-powerful cyclist lobby. And it would look like a joke to the average noncyclist. Don't even let Fox News see this article, please.

I'm sure there are people who would have a legitimate problem with this hill, but them's the breaks. I say this as an over-50 cyclist myself.

Okay, I also hate ebikes, but that's another issue about which I'm willing to concede great personal bias.

by DE on Jul 3, 2014 12:07 pm • linkreport

Just walk your bike up steep hills.

by Thayer-D on Jul 3, 2014 12:09 pm • linkreport

"Too many people right now are complaining about bicycle infrastructure that is actually needed."

Of course this won't take anyone's parking space ;)

by AWalkerInTheCity on Jul 3, 2014 12:11 pm • linkreport

Bike riders are the victim of many irrational personal biases out there.

by The Truth™ on Jul 3, 2014 12:12 pm • linkreport

According to Strava, 15th has an average gradient of 7.4% and 13th has an average gradient of 9.5%. Having ridden them both, I agree with that assessment. 13th is a tough bloody climb.
In case anyone wants to see:
http://www.strava.com/segments/658242
http://www.strava.com/segments/660837
15th is probably more than listed there, since ~20% of that segment is flat ground.

Personally, I hate this hill:
http://www.strava.com/segments/1291946
The part right before you get to the small driveway is horrible.

by MLD on Jul 3, 2014 12:28 pm • linkreport

Just pedal. For crissakes. Bikes are simple. The more complicated you make things the worse off they are.

by crin on Jul 3, 2014 12:31 pm • linkreport

Yes, just pedal. In low(est) gear if need be. That's what low gear is for. For standing starts and steep hills ;-)

by DaveG on Jul 3, 2014 12:42 pm • linkreport

Never did the Mormon Temple Hill, but I used to frequently do the nearby one that connected Beach Drive and Seminary, rising up over the Beltway on Newcastle.

by Crickey7 on Jul 3, 2014 12:44 pm • linkreport

Evan Wheeler appears to be a ringer. Strava needs to have age and non-racer categories. And, if possible, weight categories measured in "stones" rather than pounds.

by Crickey7 on Jul 3, 2014 12:52 pm • linkreport

Then we'd have to rely on DDOT to maintain this. Also, for some parts of the year this would seem to be filled with ice/snow, making it inoperable.

by JDC on Jul 3, 2014 12:58 pm • linkreport

Spent a summer bike commuting between Takoma and Falls Church... My afternoon rides (specifically that hill), I'll never forget. Short, but quite steep indeed.

by JC on Jul 3, 2014 1:00 pm • linkreport

Do any of you Strava users have data on the hill going up the bike trail into Virginia from Chain Bridge? Map My Ride seems to have that hill wrong, saying it only rises about 15 ft., so a grade calculation shows a useless 3%, but it's one of the steeper ones I know of around here. I don't have GPS.

by DE on Jul 3, 2014 1:14 pm • linkreport

Seems like a handout for people with fixies

by AthensOnThePatapsco on Jul 3, 2014 1:20 pm • linkreport

I've seen references to that being a 10% grade.

http://bikearlingtonforum.com/archive/index.php/t-1094.html?s=f9409626a431795c568078da2c53ea2a

by Crickey7 on Jul 3, 2014 1:22 pm • linkreport

That makes sense, with the "15% at steepest" being the part at the end. Thx.

by DE on Jul 3, 2014 1:33 pm • linkreport

@DE 'Do any of you Strava users have data on the hill going up the bike trail into Virginia from Chain Bridge? '

It felt above 20% at its steepest to me. Strava says it hits 24% maximum. Based on how I could barely keep my handlebars straight at the top, I would say that the grade is definitely north of 20%.

by CyclistinAlexandria on Jul 3, 2014 1:41 pm • linkreport

Thanks, CyslsitsinAlex. I like hearing that since it's about all I can do on my single speed (although the road bike is no problem). Gotta get me one of those Stravas, I guess.

by DE on Jul 3, 2014 1:50 pm • linkreport

Really begs the question of how Map My Ride could be so dramatically off.

by DE on Jul 3, 2014 1:52 pm • linkreport

For fun, the 7.6 mile Mount Washington Auto Road has an average gradient of 12% and reaches gradients of up to 22%.

by Crickey7 on Jul 3, 2014 1:53 pm • linkreport

The hill on Walter Reed Drive in Arlington, climbing up from Four Mile Run and the W&OD Trail is pretty damn brutal too.

by Sayne on Jul 3, 2014 2:23 pm • linkreport

Teleportation.

by Fischy (Ed F.) on Jul 3, 2014 2:54 pm • linkreport

That thing is awesome. I would use it all the time. Could use the bike and not have to worry too much about sweating my bag off in the dc summer. Ingenious.

by Ben on Jul 3, 2014 3:39 pm • linkreport

Could we start with a “what gears are and why you should learn to use them” lesson first? Most of the people I see struggling up that hill are grinding away in the hardest gear – including people on $1+k road bikes who might be wondering why the bikeshare rider passing them looks so much less agonized.

by Chris Adams on Jul 3, 2014 6:03 pm • linkreport

@Chris - if you don't know your own bike's gears, maybe you should visit your bike shop and have them explain it to you. But I will say lowest gear = easiest gear to pedal in.

by DaveG on Jul 3, 2014 6:09 pm • linkreport

DaveG: Um, I think Chris does know how his gears work, but is suggesting other people need to understand it better.

by David Alpert on Jul 3, 2014 11:56 pm • linkreport

I kind of love it. Only problem is it'd stop at the top, and I'd have to then actually pedal.hehe

by asffa on Jul 4, 2014 1:07 am • linkreport

@David Alpert - Yeah I realized that after I posted (too bad we can't edit/delete our own comments) B-)

by DaveG on Jul 4, 2014 9:37 am • linkreport

This being in northern Norway, I'd think the locals there have worked out how this device can work in cold conditions.

by DaveG on Jul 4, 2014 9:39 am • linkreport

Oh come on, I'm almost 60 and can make it up Irving from the bottom of the hill to 16th. Work it out guys!

by NE John on Jul 4, 2014 3:34 pm • linkreport

Chris, along with that gear lesson should be one about proper seat height adjustment which is another reason why many people struggle to pedal their bikes.

by DaveG on Jul 5, 2014 8:05 am • linkreport

One of these would be nice on Wisconsin Avenue - all the way from K Street to Fulton Street. :)

by Frank IBC on Jul 5, 2014 11:09 am • linkreport

@Crikey - I grew up in Kensington, and Forsythe Avenue was my favorite hill for biking. Forsythe is the one that goes straight up, Newcastle is the curvy one parallel to the Beltway. It's well over 20%. I got up to 45 mph on several occasions.

by Frank IBC on Jul 5, 2014 11:25 am • linkreport

I think that the steepest street in the District is 35th Street between Prospect and M Streets, although the hill is only one block. When you ride down it, when you look back up you will see a continuous skid mark from your tires.

35th Street is not meant for buses:

http://blog.georgetownvoice.com/2008/04/06/silly-bus-hills-are-for-kids/

by Frank IBC on Jul 5, 2014 11:29 am • linkreport

A little late here, but a couple weeks ago I did some grade calculations from DCGIS data for 15th, 14th, 13th, and 11th in that area (basically starting at Florida Ave in each case). Here's what I came up with:

15th: 8.8%
14th: 4.4%
13th: 9.8%
11th: 5.2%

by Froggie on Jul 5, 2014 4:33 pm • linkreport

@Frank IBC - that's what the bus driver gets for not reading the signs at the top of the hill. After all, RIF:

http://goo.gl/maps/OWbNC

Would building the Potomac Palisades Trail -

http://greatergreaterwashington.org/post/23105/a-former-trolley-line-could-become-a-walking-and-biking-trail-from-the-palisades-to-georgetown/

(starting at this location - 35th and Prospect) help to prevent these sorts of situations? ;-)

by DaveG on Jul 5, 2014 9:57 pm • linkreport

How about some research? What a disappointing article. I read the same comment with the same YouTube video. I wish rather than just vaguely paraphrase the comment and babble, you would have a little extra information to add, beyond just the fact that you can buy or rent the card. How about some research into whether anything similar has been done in the US ever? How many of those exist anywhere else? Didn't SF have one at some point? how much it would cost? whether the existing ones break down a lot? Safety in sharing the space with non-bikes? Anything!
And that "edited to add", wow. "edited to add, it would be great in lotsa places!"

by pru on Jul 7, 2014 8:48 am • linkreport

@pru

My hamburger doesn't prevent hair loss. I wish it did. So, it must be a bad hamburger. I will complain about it.

by David C on Jul 7, 2014 9:53 am • linkreport

@David C
Oh, my bad, I didn't realize that this blog was just a clickhole without a mission/ambition to include information into a blog post beyond the YouTube link that a commenter provided previously. No, that can't be true.

by pru on Jul 7, 2014 10:01 am • linkreport

Pru,

I suggest you ask for a return of the money you have spent to look at GGW.

by AWalkerInTheCity on Jul 7, 2014 10:04 am • linkreport

Oh please ... just walk up the hill. Or if you really rather not walk or have a low gear, get an electric assist bike. It's still much cheaper and space efficient than a car.

by Geof Gee on Jul 7, 2014 10:19 am • linkreport

Thanks Geoff,

Finally someone talking sense. This article is all schtick and next week I expect to one advocating zebra walks on the beltway. Keep up the good work Dave. People keep reading.

by Disciple of Geoff on Jul 7, 2014 10:48 am • linkreport

Oh, my bad, I didn't realize that this blog was just a clickhole without a mission/ambition to include information

This post does include information. It tells readers about a novel bike facility - where it is, how it works, how users access it, etc... It just doesn't include all the information that pru wants to know. That happens. A post is what it is and nothing more.

If one wants to know more than the post tells them, they have several choices.

1. They could look up the information and share it. Even if the info is readily available to anyone, that would still be immensely productive. If the information is hard to find, then it's a bit selfish to demand that it be spoon fed, especially since this wasn't what the author wanted to write about.

2. They could ask the questions they want answered and see if anyone knows. A scientist colleague of mine once said something to the effect of "a good answer is very satisfying, but a good question is thrilling." So just asking question can be productive as well.

3. They could complain that their needs were not anticipated and that the author has left them no choice but to do research that they feel the author should do for them - for free - whether it interests the author or not. This is likely counterproductive. It's also what was done in the comment above.

by David C on Jul 7, 2014 11:07 am • linkreport

just walk up the hill.

I don't think anyone is under the impression that there is simply no way to get up the hill without a trampe. So people can stop telling others to "just ride up the hill." Everyone gets it.

But, making cycling easier is a good way to increase the number of cyclists. I recognize that not everyone is as strong a cyclist as me - which stuns me as I am not in danger of winning any races any time soon. I would probably not benefit from - or pay to use - such a device. Neither would many other people here. But....some other people would. Just as people in Norway do. And maybe the trampe is just what some people need to transition from occasional cyclists to daily commuters.

Maybe some here would look down on such people. Maybe they would view them as wimps who just need to suck it up and shift to a lower gear. Maybe they would even be right. But, I don't personally care. If such a device would coddle enough wimps into bike commuting that it became cost effective, I would whole-heartedly support coddling the bejeezus out of them. Let's focus on the goal here. The goal is to make people into transportational cyclists. It is not to turn grandma into a real man who attacks hills with great confidence.

I don't think the machismo is helping to do anything, except to make people feel better about themselves.

by David C on Jul 7, 2014 11:16 am • linkreport

Even in Norway, it doesn't seem like there's a trampe on every hilly street, unless I'm wrong...and it's OK to push your bike up a hill if you can't/don't want to ride up it Give lowest gear a try first, though B-)

by DaveG on Jul 7, 2014 12:04 pm • linkreport

David C

+1000

by AWalkerInTheCity on Jul 7, 2014 12:10 pm • linkreport

Well said, David C.

by MLD on Jul 7, 2014 12:14 pm • linkreport

Pru, I sympathize with your POV about the information, but as someone who wholeheartedly 1000% supports the notion of this lift, I am much less irritated than you are. The way I see it is just as a kind of what does everyone think? kind of posting. I am not sure it's meant to be information intensive. It's probably meant to generate information or at least opinion.

About the negative opinions, I am so glad to see the strong response recently!

Also, it's important to realize that there are many different populations in DC. There are cyclists, but among the cyclists there are at least two core groups that I break down this way - there are those who call a bike lane a bike lane and those who call it a cycle track. When I think of "cycle track" I think of those guys in the Olympics on that steep outdoor ring track who creep along and then speed up when the race begins. I have no idea what that little stadium is called, but that's what "cycle track" reminds me of. I mean, we don't call a car lane an auto track.

Point being, not everyone will hate a lift! (But these are people, present company excepted, who aren't avid bikers obviously and do not follow biking news necessarily. They may know about WABA but may think it's not for them.)

Furthermore, some might even get curious to try cycling with a lift.

No, I don't think there are a lot of these things in the US. I don't even think there are a lot in NOrway. And if people have read the tea leaves and seen that electric bikes are the wave of the future, then no, maybe it does not make sense to build it. But when I think about an "ebike," i think 1) heavy; 2) a little bit polluting. Don't we ride bikes not to pollute? The main drawback I see to it is that it will need to be maintained, and that we do not do so well in DC.

In short, obviously more information is needed.

by Jazzy on Jul 7, 2014 1:12 pm • linkreport

Walking your bike is pretty far from "machismo". So where this is coming from is lost on me.

Nobody is attacking anyone's masculinity or toughness* ... so let's avoid strawman arguments and focus on the goal here. We want an efficient, robust and friendly transportation system that includes walking, cycling, public transportation and even automobiles. Considering the alternatives -- a person can walk, practice with lower gears, gets an electric assist, takes a bus, ... -- a bicycle escalator seems both expensive and unnecessary. Based on Metro's elevators some of which are also exposed to the elements, I'd be pretty hesitant to rely on one for daily use. Finally, it's not obvious that the trampe is much easier than walking since the force pushing you up appears quite uneven. This seems especially bad if we're talking about the marginal cyclist/pedestrian.

So from where I stand, people really do need to say "just walk" more often during discussions of bicycle escalators. Walking is a pretty reasonable and robust alternative -- and rather non-machismo, IMO -- that seems to work for billions of people all over the world.

* ... at least I didn't see it in the thread.

by Geof Gee on Jul 7, 2014 1:23 pm • linkreport

"there are those who call a bike lane a bike lane and those who call it a cycle track'

I use the word cycle track to refer to a "bike lane" that is protected by a physical barrier - a curb, a row of posts, or a row of parked cars. I use the word bike lane to refer to one protected only by paint. And I use "buffered bike lane" if the paint is more than just a single stripe. They are all different in terms of safety and comfort, and I find having different words helps.

by AWalkerInTheCity on Jul 7, 2014 1:32 pm • linkreport

Jazzy,
Thanks. I, too, support the notion of this lift, and that's why when I read the original comment with the link to a Youtube video, I poked around the internet for a few minutes looking for more information, and quickly gave up, seeing as everything was pointing back to the same 4-year old video. When I saw this morning a link saying "Can a bike escalator help riders up 15th Street's steep hill? Not likely", I clicked through, expecting to get a fresh interesting update, from someone who would have taken, before posting on a well-visited blog, a little more than the 5 minutes I took for my own education. It's ridiculous, and kind of offensive that he wouldn't.
And to those who suggest that since reading the blog is free, the writers don't owe the readers any content, well I disagree.

by pru on Jul 7, 2014 1:56 pm • linkreport

I'll gladly go to Trondheim and take a fresh video and write down my experience for the price of a round trip plane ticket and a few days lodging.

by drumz on Jul 7, 2014 2:50 pm • linkreport

So then, option #3 it is.

by David C on Jul 7, 2014 3:02 pm • linkreport

"And to those who suggest that since reading the blog is free, the writers don't owe the readers any content, well I disagree"

To those who say that the author of the above words does not owe me a bottle of a good Cabernet, well I disagree. ;)

by AWalkerInTheCity on Jul 7, 2014 3:24 pm • linkreport

the current rules about ebikes are pretty anti- IMHO and a bit Luddite

by asffa on Jul 7, 2014 7:03 pm • linkreport

Why should something be done for bikes but not pedestrians ?

by kk on Jul 8, 2014 12:07 am • linkreport

I hope David will respond to Courtland Milloy's column on this topic? http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/bicyclist-bullies-try-to-rule-the-road-in-dc/2014/07/08/f7843560-06e3-11e4-bbf1-cc51275e7f8f_story.html

by Gregory O. on Jul 9, 2014 9:18 am • linkreport

I wonder what the differences in length, grade, elevation change, etc. are between the Trondheim Trampe and the potential trampe on this 15th St. hill? Strictly for comparison purposes.

Milloy is using bikes as code for an anti-newcomer screed here. But in reference to Kelly's piece, I also think the District should consider putting signs up at the edges of the downtown no-bikes-on-sidewalks zone, perhaps with a simple map showing the limits of that zone.

by DaveG on Jul 9, 2014 10:15 am • linkreport

I travel that route everyday coming from work. Yes it's steep but there are bike lanes on both side of the street so if you can't make it up the hill, get off your bike and walk it. Our tax dollars can be put to better use.

by Quilter on Jul 9, 2014 10:59 am • linkreport

15th Street along Meridian Hill Park is only one long block. Seems like it would a large expense for such a short distance. If something like this were to be build it I think it would be more useful on long hills such as Mass, Conn, Wisc Ave's which are much longer hills.

by BobD on Jul 9, 2014 10:59 pm • linkreport

Folks, folks, folks - news flash!! Courtland Milloy is going to be so elated (or disappointed? LOL) to learn that the trampe in question was removed in 2012:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trampe_bicycle_lift

Now, the most burning question over this whole Trampe-Milloy-bike lanes-myopic twits thing is, how the heck do you pronounce the word, "tramp?" "trampy?" Some other way?

;-)

by DaveG on Jul 10, 2014 6:07 am • linkreport

Oops my bad. The trampe was then upgraded with different technology in 2013. Too early in the morning to be posting, before coffee, at least ;-)

Now it looks like a "shweeb" is coming to Niagara Falls, Ontario next year:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shweeb

Shweebs and trampes everywhere!!! ;-)

by DaveG on Jul 10, 2014 6:20 am • linkreport

why can't we just walk our bikes up the hill??? you know, like everyone else.

by Ron Obvious on Jul 10, 2014 7:27 am • linkreport

@Captain...err...Ron Obvious - What's stopping you (or anyone else) from walking your bike up any hill? :-)

If your point is that a trampe is overkill, then I agree with you. But it's fun to speculate about it anyway, and look at the firestorm Courtland Milloy set off with it :-))

by DaveG on Jul 10, 2014 9:16 am • linkreport

Weak-ass bikers who aren't up to the task of pedaling up 15th should walk it or choose another mode of transport/route. If the fragility of the metro escalators offers any indication of what to expect, crews with pylons and caution tape will be blocking the bike lane every week or two to repair this unnecessary contraption. DC isn't getting this soft, right? We still believe in Pedal Power don't we?!

by nathan on Jul 10, 2014 9:40 am • linkreport

To a bicyclist confronting a steep hill I'd suggest either low(est) gear, or walking their bike uphill before I'd call them "weak-ass" but that's just my own crazy idea :-)

by DaveG on Jul 10, 2014 10:01 am • linkreport

I'm going to start pushing for the implementation of a Schweeb system in Ward 8.

@nathan and Ron Obvious, see my comment here.

by David C on Jul 10, 2014 11:21 am • linkreport

OK ... now I see some machismo.

by Geof Gee on Jul 10, 2014 11:24 am • linkreport

Yeah, the comment I originally chose to respond to by Geof was probably not the best example. It was just the hill that broke the wimpy cyclist's back.

by David C on Jul 10, 2014 11:28 am • linkreport

Let's not be too harsh on bicyclists who have to use low(est) gear or walk their bikes up steep hills. We don't want to discourage bicycling even among "weak-assed" or "wimpy" people, now, do we?

by DaveG on Jul 10, 2014 12:48 pm • linkreport

It says it is safe. But, what happens if your foot slips off the treadle?

by Paul on Jul 10, 2014 2:01 pm • linkreport

I still want my gondola.

by Crickey7 on Jul 10, 2014 2:08 pm • linkreport

Crickey, will you settle for a Shweeb?

by DaveG on Jul 10, 2014 2:35 pm • linkreport

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