Tag Archive: cargo bike

  1. Prague’s cargo bike boom – a case study for urban last-mile deliveries

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    Source: Autonomy Network

    Prague remains a key location for cargo bike urban integration, having opened two city center depots. After operating for a sustained period, the success of the scheme can now be evaluated.

    Prague’s two cargo bike depots opened in 2020 and 2021 respectively, being recognized by the 2021 Eurocities Awards as a low-carbon alternative to last-mile van delivery. The principal is simple, a van drops off packages at the central depot, which are then delivered across the city via cargo bike. In Prague, hilly terrain leads to a preference for e-cargo bikes, allowing riders to tackle tougher terrain with ease. Thus far, each depot has delivered approximately 7,000 orders per month, with each location housing up to eight companies.

    Successful collaboration between public and private sectors

    Operating companies pay a small fee to cover depot running costs, and hence, the city administration does not have to contribute a stake in the project outside of the initial construction cost. For a relatively low price, the depot helps to achieve Prague’s long-term vision to promote cycling and change its citizens’ attitudes to this means of transport. The depot also contributes to the city’s pledge to lower its CO2 emissions by 45% by 2030 and to be carbon neutral by 2050.

    The project is a good example of cooperation between different actors. The pilot project was approved by the city council based on a study by the Prague Institute of Planning and Development. It took only three months to execute the proposal. Ekolo, the company setting up and running the depot, attributes this success to intense cooperation between the logistics firm and city-run companies.

    Domestic firm (Dámejídlo, Zásilkovna, Rohlík or WEDO) and international firms (DHL, Dascher, GLS) both profit from the innovation. Twelve enterprises use the two depots at present, but Adam Scheinherr, mayor’s deputy for transportation, is in talks with companies that could not be accommodated in the first depots. A representative of Ekolo started helping with similar cargo bike projects in London, Copenhagen, and Lille.

    Potential to inspire future action and lessons learned

    As the largest depots of their kind, Prague’s cargo bike scheme offers both a point of inspiration and a case study from which to learn. Of course, it is commonly accepted that electric cargo bikes are an optimal delivery vehicle; speedy, quiet, low polluting, cheaper, accessible, etc. however, new insight can now be utilized to further improve customer and driver experience.

    The key lessons learned for future projects were:

    • More depots are required: This will minimize driver distance and reduce delivery times.
    • Unsustainable trends must still be recognized: Overconsumption and the negative impact of deliveries and packaging are still prominent issues for the majority of parcel lifetimes. More localized production is required.
    • Worker experience must be improved: One recent example concerns an online grocery store, Rohlik.cz, one of the companies using the depot. The firm reduced the couriers’ wages (despite having almost doubled its profit last year), sparking public concern. Other difficulties of this job came to light, namely long working hours, lack of social security, and uncertain wages.
  2. The Evolution of Cargo Bikes Rolls On

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    Source: The Mayor EU

    A forthcoming Rotterdam-based e-bike campaign means that it will soon be possible to borrow a cargo bike free of charge.

    A forthcoming Rotterdam-based e-bike campaign means that it will soon be possible to borrow a cargo bike free of charge. In a city where almost anything is possible by bike, the trial period will pave the way for the transportation of bulky waste, further promoting fitness and sustainability.

    The trial period will offer electric cargo bikes free of charge, in which items such as large garden waste or second-hand items can be deposited in environmental parks and certified locations. Here, the items will embark on a new journey and become useful every day goods for others in the city.

    The Municipality of Rotterdam announced the new initiative only last week in an effort to encourage residents to embrace the opportunity to increase their recycling quota and cut down on incineration. The public will be able to reach environmental parks in this favored transportation alternative by reserving a cargo bike or trailer from multiple locations and using it for part of the day to transport voluminous waste.

    The trailer is an open cart of 2 x 1.1 x 0.34 meters, and the size of the electric cargo bike is 1 x 0.5 x 0.6 meters, ideal for household waste that does not fit into underground containers or garbage bags. Examples of this waste include furniture such as sofas and cupboards, and large electronic items such as washing machines and vacuum cleaners, all of which can take on a new leaf of life by being transported to a recycling plant. In addition, trailers can also be attached to a car for ease of use.

    The trial period will remain in place until the end of October when the authorities will evaluate the usability and the usefulness of the new service. A discussion about extending the service permanently from 2023 will address the success and the uptake of the environmental campaign. At this time, only residents of Rotterdam can adopt the service, with businesses unable to apply.

  3. e-Cargo investment of £920,000 for hospital scheme in Bristol, UK

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    Source: Cycling Industry News, Simon Fox

    A 12-month trial sees vans servicing Bristol Royal Infirmary replaced by cargo bikes for urban journeys

    Run by West of England Combined Authority, the trial will take place for a full year, beginning June 2022. E-cargo bikes will be used as direct replacements for vans previously utilized by the Bristol Royal Infirmary, with GPS tracking measuring how this change impacts delivery performance.

    The £920,000 of funding from central government seeks to deliver substantial change to the way in which UK transport systems operate. As outlined by the Future Transport Zone, “The zones will provide real-world testing for experts, allowing them to work with a range of local bodies such as councils, hospitals, airports and universities to test innovative ways to transport people and goods.”

    A comparable study by Pedal and Post, an Oxford-based cargo bike provider, found medical delivery times to be halved when using cargo bikes in comparison to vans in urban areas. The results for Bristol will become clear in a year’s time.

  4. The German cargo bike boom: 2021 market report

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    Source: cargobike.jetzt

    The nationwide German Bike Monitor 2021 survey, which occurs every two years, has highlighted shifting attitudes towards cargo bikes within the population

    The definition for a cargo bike used in the survey is as follows: “The cargo bike is a bicycle that is used to transport loads or people. Depending on the intended use, the basket/box is in the rider’s field of vision or in the rear area of ​​the bike. Depending on the design, these bikes are equipped with two or three wheels.”

    From this, participants were quizzed on various aspects of the cargo bike market. The representative survey now estimates over eight million potential cargo bike buyers in Germany alone, with double that figure showing interest in cargo bike-sharing services.

    Awareness of cargo models has risen from 38% in 2017 to 63% in 2021, clearly indicating the growing market. Additionally, 2% of the population now use a cargo bike in their lives (1.2 million individuals).

    An interesting question, newly added this year, regarded second-hand bikes. The cargo bike garnered the most interest of all bike models in this case. 35% of those interested in a cargo bike would prefer to buy pre-owned; for comparison, this figure falls to 14% when averaged between all bike types.

    The final and particularly insightful section of the data explores the arguments against interest in cargo bikes; the reasoning for such disinterest was found to cover a range of issues. At 61 percent, having your own car will remain the most important argument against buying a cargo bike in 2021, this was followed by the bikes being ‘too bulky and unwieldy’ (36%), lack of parking/storage space (29%), skepticism about effectiveness (27%), and finally, the high price tag at 24%.

    Read the full German Bicycle Monitor 2021 here.

  5. Road safety police in Berlin now ride cargo bikes

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    Source: News.dayFR

    Berlin’s Chief of Police, Dr. Barbara Slowik, unveiled 70 service bicycles and 11 cargo bicycles for road safety advisors at the five local police departments.

    Rather than be transported in a radio truck, ‘Road Safety Tips’ documents are now transported on cargo bikes. The 70 service bikes include a lock, first aid kit, multitool, and waterproof luggage bag. Additionally, all riding officers were provided with new, custom uniforms.

  6. ICBF announces 2022 dates – in collaboration with World of eMobility

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    Source: Cargo Bike Festival

    The International Cargo Bike Festival (ICBF) will take place in Amsterdam, 27-29 October 2022.

    Attendees of ICBF 2022 will find the festival in a special cargo bike-focused area of the wider World of eMobility 2022 event – a hybrid B2B / B2C trade show that saw its debut in 2021. The cargo bike festival will be a unique and innovation-focused affair, including exhibition space, indoor test track, and cargo bike conference.

    Discover more via the official ICBF website, here.

    The event will take place at Expo Haarlemmermeer, a multifunctional venue surrounded by nature, in the heart of Randstad. The exclusive location has an industrial look and feel and is just a stone’s throw from Schiphol Airport and Amsterdam. The unexpected peace and tranquillity amidst the hustle and bustle of the Randstad, and the striking architecture of the building, blend in perfectly well with the lush nature surrounding it.

  7. Keep it simple – the new Pendix eDrive IN

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    At the last IAA mobility, LEVA-EU member Pendix, market leader for retrofit drives in the bicycle market, presented a revolutionary drive that is to be used mainly in the B2B sector for cargo bikes. This gives Pendix an additional pillar for the retrofit drive, because the Pendix eDrive IN creates new possibilities for bicycle construction, but is installed directly by the OEMs. There are already numerous interested parties and pre-orders, although the drive has not yet been delivered. Christian Hennig was in charge of the development. We spoke to him about the drive.

    The Pendix eDrive IN is available as an innovative serial hybrid variant and in combination with a chain drive, i.e. a mechanical drive train. How did the idea come about?

    The market for cargo bikes is growing and growing, the bikes are also becoming more and more popular in the professional sector. We have therefore thought about how we can meet the requirements for an electric drive specifically for this application. Both privately and commercially used bikes should focus on the necessary performance in order to be able to move heavy loads safely and comfortably. Of course, reliability also plays an important role, especially if a cargo bike is to be used as a replacement for a car.

    The new drive system caused quite a stir at the IAA in Munich. Why?

    The serial hybrid system in particular is better suited for cargo bikes by one decisive characteristic. By using a pedal generator, all mechanical wear parts of the conventional drive train such as chains, chainrings, or sprockets are eliminated. This increases reliability and significantly reduces maintenance costs. In addition, the entire space between the wheels can be used.

    How does the Pendix serial hybrid version work?

    The system basically consists of a pedal generator, one or more drive motors, and a battery. The pedal generator is located on the bottom bracket, which converts the mechanical pedaling movement of the rider into electrical energy and then transmits this directly to the drive motors in the rear wheels. The generator can generate torque to give the rider a natural pedaling feel, very similar to that of a conventional bike. In addition to the driver’s performance, additional energy is supplied to the drive motors from a battery in order to ensure the necessary performance for moving a cargo bike safely and comfortably.

    Where do you see potential uses for the new drive?

    I see possible uses in cargo bikes where it is important to use the available space in the best possible way. In newer vehicle concepts, in particular, one often sees a very elaborately designed drive train with up to four chains connected in series in order to mechanically transmit the power from the driver to the rear wheels. This is exactly where there is a great advantage since the installation space can be used. In addition, many wearing parts of the mechanical power transmission are eliminated, which often cause unwanted downtimes of the bicycle, especially with intensively used cargo bikes.

    There are already other manufacturers who also offer a serial hybrid drive. Are there any significant differences in the functions? What are the advantages of your product?

    In principle, the functionality and range of functions of the various systems are quite similar. Our previous Pendix eDrive system was always developed according to the principle of “keep it simple”, and we are continuing this with this product. Generator and drive motors are based on the same engine concept and have been optimized in terms of function. Here, too, we offer a system in which the components come from a single source and are perfectly matched to each other. Functions such as gear shifting or reversing can be solved by software in the future. Of course, our proven Pendix.bike PRO app will also be used with this product in order to be able to provide the rider with useful information, customization of the riding profile and firmware updates over-the-air, and at the same time to support the service partner with diagnosis.

    At the end of the day, is the vehicle actually still a pedelec?

    This question can be answered with a clear yes. After years of back and forth, the European Commission decided at the beginning of 2022 that bicycles with a serial-hybrid drive system are on an equal footing with conventional pedelecs with a mechanical drive train. In order to maintain technology neutrality, it doesn’t matter whether the bike is equipped with a mechanical chain or not – as long as the drive only provides support and the rider also pedals. For us, our new drive was the next step in bicycle evolution right from the development stage. That’s why we’re happy to now also have support from Brussels.

  8. German cargo-bike market continues to bulk-up with 100,000 sales in 2020

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    Source: Forbes

    A ‘pandemic bike boom’ has catapulted the German and wider European cargo-bike market towards an estimated growth of 40-50% in 2021

    As European cities continue to grow in size and density, road space has become increasingly scarce. In tandem, online shopping has become the new norm, so it is unsurprising that in locations such as the UK, van traffic has seen a 71% increase over the last 20 years; for comparison, car traffic saw a 13% growth in the same period. More vans equate to more congestion, more pollution, and slower delivery times. In Germany, the cargo-bike is powering onto the scene with such ferocity that leading magazine Bike Europe stated that the bikes have quickly “[changed] the look of streets” in many cities.

    Six years ago, in 2016, annual German cargo-bike sales stood at 15,000, in 2020 sales reached 100,000; today, the pandemic induced ‘bike boom’ has led to manufacturers estimating they experienced growth of 40-50% in 2021. When discussing modern city planning Walther Ploos van Amstel, a professor of city logistics at Amsterdam University, argues that “trucks… need to become smarter, cleaner, quieter, smaller and safer.” to remain viable – electric cargo-bikes already fulfill all of these criteria.

    This spike in interest correlates to businesses begining to identify the range of benefits that electric cargo-bikes may bring to their operations in urban areas. In many cities, trips made by cargo-bikes are often more efficient during both travel and delivery procedure (parking, unloading, etc.). Consequently, policymakers are further accelerating the electric cargo-bike trend on a local and national scale, offering subsidies, trial schemes, and rebates. Cargo-bikes make up a crucial step in the marathon that is transforming European cities into climate-neutral locations.

    Electric-cargo-bike
  9. UK’s first electric cargo bike sharing scheme launches in Hackney

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    Residents or visitors in Stoke Newington, London Fields and Shoreditch will this September be able to take advantage of a small fleet of rental electric cargo bikes, in the first scheme of its kind in the UK

    With local councils in the country setting and chasing ambitious emissions targets, and the general public’s growing appetite for greener lifestyle options, it may come as a surprise that no such setup exists already. Under the name Cargo Bike Share, eight electrically assisted ecargo bikes will be available for hire via 4 docking stations. The bikes can carry up to 80kg and will allow people a more environmentally friendly option when it comes to moving heavy loads, such as bulky shopping, personal belongings, equipment and more.

    This much-anticipated arrangement is funded by the Mayor of London and the tri-borough Zero Emissions Network, and is being delivered by urban bike share provider, Beryl, with hire arranged through their app.

    Of the scheme, Cllr Mete Coban MBE, Cabinet Member for Energy, Waste, Transport and Public Realm said: “Our residents and businesses are passionate about doing all they can to help improve air quality – and we’re launching this scheme to provide easy-to-access e-cargo bikes for shopping and carrying goods.

    Cargo Bike Share is a nationwide first, and is one of the many ways we’re working to rebuild a greener Hackney in the aftermath of the pandemic – with cleaner air, healthier lives and better neighbourhoods for all of our residents and businesses.”

    Cllr Rowena Champion, Islington Council’s Executive Member for Environment and Transport, commented: “We know that by taking steps to help residents and businesses lower their emissions, we can create a greener Islington and achieve net zero carbon status by 2030, to help tackle the climate emergency.

    Cargo bikes provide a greener, healthier way for residents and businesses to travel around the borough, helping to reduce congestion on our roads and improving air quality for everyone and the ZEN project is a key part of how we want to encourage their use.

    Through our people-friendly streets programme, we have been able to create safer, greener, healthier streets that are better suited to walking, cycling and using buggies and wheelchairs. We look forward to seeing Islington’s residents and businesses use these environmentally-friendly cargo bikes on the borough’s streets.”

    Beryl chief executive Philip Ellis said: “For last mile deliveries or short journeys, e-cargo bikes are by far the best and often the most time efficient way to move large or heavy items. By replacing vans, a network of e-cargo bikes has the potential to transform local areas making them safer and more pleasant to live and work in, due to the reduction in CO2 emissions, noise pollution and stationary motor vehicles that take up valuable space on our streets.

    We are really excited to be partnering with Hackney Council to launch this UK-first trial, which we believe will have a lasting positive impact on the community, and widen access to e-cargo bikes.

    ‘Beryl has always strived to be a micro-mobility pioneer that offers the broadest options in an affordable and accessible way. We believe this e-cargo bike trial has the potential to show what is possible in many urban areas across the UK, as businesses and residents explore more sustainable transport options.’’

    Source: https://news.hackney.gov.uk/cargo-bike-sharing-to-launch-in-stoke-newington-london-fields-and-shoreditch/

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