People have a lot of cars and public transport all over the world, but the bicycle is still very much a common way to get around in Japan. So much that finding a place to park the two wheeler can be a problem. Japan, a nation of 127 million people has 72 million bicycles with over 10 million new bicycles being sold every year.
And besides finding a parking place, Its even more of a problem when people start to park illegally, for example in roadways and then block traffic and pose a hazard to both drivers and pedestrians. Illegally parked bicycles are bicycles cannot be moved quickly and that have been left unattended by their owners. In no parking zones, patrols immediately remove the unattended bicycles.
To remedy this problem, a solution is made up, which stores hundreds of bicycles underground using a system called Eco Cycle, a robot system which stores bicycles in a 11 meter deep well under the ground.
Why is it cool
You don’t need to search for a parking spot, no bicycles moved away by patrols. And not a chance for bicycle thieves to steal your two wheeler, if you putted it in the Eco Cycle.
In the future of sustainable cities I think we are going to see a lot more things involve under the ground. We all know the underground car garage and from now on also the bicycle parking. But if we look further at other signals that are taking place under the ground, we see an underground city in Montreal already. It is the largest underground complex in the world. With over 32 km of tunnels spread over more than 12 km2, connected areas with all kinds of different offers. For example, shopping malls, apartments, hotels, banks and even museums, seven metro stations, a bus terminal and an arena are heading under the ground. In the winter, around 500,000 people use the underground city every day. This is an example of the upcoming world under the ground we live on now.