October 3, 2012 at 2:52am
Summary of interview findings (the summary of summaries!)
- “Most bikes are regarded as toys”, as in, they are not taken seriously as a valid form of vehicle transport.
- The notion that the more cyclists there are on the roads of Sydney, others non-cyclists will be influenced to also take up cycling. This increases the visibility of cyclists, which can act as a slow catalyst for positive behavioural change towards cycle culture.
- Bicyclists are perceived quite poorly on the roads of Sydney — considered “bottom of the food chain”
- Even if Sydneysiders own a bike, they can have “confidence issues” with the dangers involved of riding in Sydney traffic. It is currently considered dangerous in Sydney to ride on major streets.
- Drivers in Sydney aren’t used to cyclists on the road — not like drivers in European countries such as Austria are.
- If more people in Sydney simply started cycling, then drivers would be more subconsciously aware, and better equipped to mutually co-exist with cyclists.
- Christian’s story of the obstacle placed in the way of a bike path with no concern for bicyclists, instead deciding to warn drivers of the obstacle, highlights an important aspect of Sydney culture towards bicyclists and to our research: we initially assumed that we would focus on instigating a positive attitude shift towards bicycle culture for people transiting in cars, but this story has shown us that the problem may be rooted further in the cultural fabric of Sydney, and would ideally warrant a paradigm shift in how Sydney, as a culture, perceives bicycle culture, particularly as a credible form of transport around the city.
- Christian’s views on the idea of taking up cycling because it is good for the environment as “rubbish” are interesting because it may signal a wrong approach to shifting cultural attitudes in a positive way towards bicycle culture in Sydney. Perhaps a better view would be to elevate the bicycle as a credible transport vehicle.