The Great Big Going Global Bike Blog Roundup

This week, Velo-City 2012 seemed to take over the twittersphere with an endless stream of interesting and inspiring stuff, getting off right away with a keynote by Gil Penalosa urging cities not to bother with half-hearted infrastructure, while the ECF took its message to the very top. Vienna has set its targets high - perhaps to capture that lucrative tourism market while Kevin Mayne's been enjoying seeing the sites on a borrowed bike rather than lug his own around - althoug the Dutch are a little taken aback at a North American style waiver if they want to use theirs... The Tyee learned some surprising lessons while Green Ideas Factory, ever the contrarian, wonders if the ECF is really the elite cyclists federation.

Elite or not, it seems opportune to take you on our own global tour, with the Invisible Visible Man, in the process of moving to New York, feeling the fear and doing it anyway, while Oregon finds that fewer cars won't hurt the economy. The Seattle Times wonders if you're ready for the new Olympic challenge cycling in London while Cyclists in the City went the other way across the Atlantic to enjoy the Boris bike experience in Montreal. We were relieved to discover that there are still nine million bicycles in Beijing, even if they're not being ridden as much. Not so in Toronto where the Mayor doesn't even pretend to support cycling. In Australia, cycling has risen 82% in Sydney (because when it comes down to it, putting in 55km of separated bike lanes simply works) but overall, the proportion cycling in Australia has fallen. Meanwhile in Paris, Velib turns five and motorised traffic has actually fallen. Has that whetted your appetite for bike-related travel? Somewhat closer to home, our very own Chairman Jim invites you all on a seaside safari.

With all that good Velo-city stuff still fresh in our minds, how disappointing to see what Edinburgh has done to Princes Street - but it's all right, says the council, just because it's got a picture of a bike in it doesn't mean it's a bike lane. No wonder bloggers think Edinburgh should be going Dutch, although there is still the small matter of its very three-dimensional topography. Not enough to stop Dave McCraw from showing the local paper's commentators just what you can do with a bike.

Over the Irish Sea, it wasn't just the Queen visiting Belfast, the Danish Cycle Embassy was there too, along with Roger Geffen from the CTC, though history does not recall if they shook hands. Meanwhile, Belfast cyclists are urged to help reclaim their cycle lanes from illegally parked cars - while further south, the Republic's politicians are urged to repeal their mandatory use legislation

Children and safety were two prominent themes in Velo-City this year, with it never being too early to get them started - if only because of the time you will save. Spokes' latest fact sheet looks at how to start - we'd suggest that not making them cross the A985 to get to school might be a good start (perhaps a nice treasure hunt would be better). Aberdeen Cars just hopes its citizen contributors keep their kids where they belong, strapped in a 4x4 (caution, contains satire).

Safety was much on the UK blog world's mind as well, with the latest casualty figures: crunches the numbers (although in the circumstances that's not necessarily the best verb). Cyclists in the City is outraged at the London figures - and the People's Front of South Gloucestershire is sick of blue wash. Our politicians will just have to find some space for bikes on Britain's roads. Cycling Info compares designs that do just that with those that, er, don't, while As Easy as Riding a Bike considers the wonders of Cycle superhighway 2 and Kennington People on Bikes considers the mystery of the vanishing cycle lane. At least I Bike London has found some bikes that even the mingiest of politicians could find some space for.

If our politicians won't save us, helmets will, right? Not if you're Dutch apparently. War on the Motorist digs a little deeper. The Urban Country thinks they're a no-brainer all right - for drivers (or indeed for women) while Bill Bean wonders why we should waste our energy on the subject at all, given the way it sucks the oxygen out of the room. Certainly it seems the courts won't, with another driver cleared of causing death by dangerous driving and a second one only pleading guilty the second time he kills someone. The Cycling Silk lets Eilidh Cairn's sister have the last word - while we think it might not only be Indian judges that might be in for a culture shock if they went to the Hague

The brilliantly named Felix Salmon considers how to make New York's cyclists safer while we wonder whether this initiative doesn't actually define a 'sticking plaster solution' - certainly, Carmenego wasn't impressed by a similar leaflet campaign. Kennington People on Bikes thinks it's who's in the cab that might make a real difference. But if the gender gap on 16 wheels isn't closing, perhaps it is on two wheels? And, after last week's post, we discover the real reason why women might match their nail varnish to their bike colour - and it's got nothing to do with polka-dot helmets. Or dressing like a serious cyclist, for that matter.

But enough of that fluffy stuff, let's talk manly things like money, £15 million for junctions (except for viewers in Scotland) and £550 million to postpone fuel duty increases. No wonder in Fife there's simply no money for proper infrastructure. And with the cyclists wading in discussing fiscal matters, perhaps it's also no wonder the New York Comptroller feels compelled to offer his tuppence worth on the helmet debate. Single-handedly keeping the economy going, Chester Cycling gets on his bike and looks for work.

They say all politics is local, and it doesn't get much more local than an unobtrusive sign getting up a councillor's nose (although some councillors actuall welcome the thought of a joined up network - fancy that). New Cycling tries another tack and writes to the local director of Public Health. Londonneur has an encounter with his cycling mayor and finds him a bit sweary - although admittedly not as sweary as the Alternative Department for Transport which has some full and frank feedback for the guru of vehicular cycling, John Franklin. Fortunately Cycle Fife was in a better mood. And speaking of language, how would you describe yourself as a cyclist? Two interesting posts from the Cycling Cultures blog explore more.

Let us end on a positive note, though, with the Olympic torch carried on a recumbent - and two separate social media outlets reuniting people with their stolen bikes.

That's all folks, so keep your eyes peeled for either lost bikes or great blog posts, and see you all next week.