June 10, 2009

72,000

72,000 is the number of abandoned or illegally parked bicycles removed from the streets of Setagaya-ku each year.

72,000 bicycles abandoned each year in Setagaya-ku alone. Lets assume for a moment that all 23 Wards of Tokyo see similar figures, that's 1,656,000 abandoned bicycles removed from the streets of Tokyo per year, the vast majority of which go unclaimed and are subsequently destroyed.

1,656,000 bicycles abandoned per year in Tokyo, not Japan, Tokyo ...

2 comments:

  1. hey there,

    i was just watching the discovery channel here in my cozy apartment in seoul. i found your blog on a search. as a lover of bike riding, i used to ride a lot when i lived in atlanta and then when i lived in busan. i'm looking to getting a bike pretty soon so i could traverse around this great city.

    love your blog....and i would love to bike around japan in the future.

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  2. These are not all abandoned bikes - not by a long shot. Tokyo can't get its act together to introduce bicycle sharing, or even put in decent bicycle parking at subway exits or elsewhere around town. So what a lot of people do is have one or two very cheap bikes. They ride one to the local station, where they leave it parked illegally or legally, catch the train to the nearest station to work, and if that is a fair distance, they might leave another bike for that end also. Given that this means three public places where you leave your bike, chances are many if not most people doing this have to park their bike "illegally" given the lack of facilities. So it is not surprising that their bike gets picked up as abandoned if they have left it there while they were overseas or during a cold spell or while they were sick etc.

    It really is shameful that bike sharing hasn't caught on yet here. Just think - almost all these bikes get ridden only once or twice a day. With bike sharing you can have individual bikes easily being used by 15 or more separate individuals at different times. This of course eliminates the "abandoned bicycle" problem immediately, as people no longer need their own individual bike sitting around all day locked up and waiting for them.

    Carfree Tokyo

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