The Politics of Cycling in Taiwan

I predicted a while back that it wouldn’t take long for the bicycle to enter the political arena in stump speeches, campaign ads and policy propositions.


The Taiwan News reports that the DPP candidate for Xinbei City, Su Tseng-chang, ( chong, chong, chong!!!)
has dragged out a proposal for improving bicycle lanes in Taipei, taking a pot shot at his KMT rivals and their disaster of a Dun Hua Rd. bike lane. The article states:

Su, a former Taipei County magistrate, also reiterated a series of policy on the promotion of bicycle industry as a local governor, including a long-distance trail linking the Yingge Ceramics Museum and the Shihsanhang Museum of Archaeology in Bali Township, both of which are popular attractions.


I am all for promoting cycling, but I strongly feel that most politicians are having a difficult time wrapping their minds around the bicycle as something other than casual entertainment. The local governments need to start concentrating on safe, bicycle viaducts and bicycle corridors through urban areas to encourage people to leave their cars at home.

Unfortunately, all we ever hear about are projects to drive tourism. It really feels like Taiwan is seeking to become another Okinawa or Hainan Island; a tourism Mecca for visitors from a wealthy metropole.

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