The Rise of the Bike in Mexico CityBy Jorge Ramos Zwanziger | Tue, 02/02/2021 - 17:12
Bike mobility in Mexico City has increased a whopping 221 percent since March 2020, according to data from the Ministry of Mobility. According to Apple’s COVID-19 Mobility Report, prior to the pandemic, pedestrians were considered the highest mobility group in Mexico City, however, since COVID-19, automobile mobility has taken the top spot.
This is one of the main reasons why transportation services such as the Metro, the Metrobus, buses and other means of public transportation are registering noticeably decreased levels of mobility, reports El Economista. Social distancing is hard to achieve inside a bus or the metro, so people are now turning their eyes on a mobility device that has a handlebar and two wheels, you guessed it, the bike. After a historic increase in COVID-19 cases in the months of December and January, as well as the collapse of six metro lines due to a fire, Mexico City citizens are now looking at bicycles as a safer and cheaper mobility alternative, reports El País.
As a result, Mercado Libre reported last year a 200 percent bicycle sales increase in its platform, particularly in June 2020 when Mexico City residents celebrated Bicycle Day and the city´s government announced the construction of more kilometers in bike paths. Bikes have proven to be a safer means of transportation, especially throughout the pandemic, as they guarantee social distancing from other riders and have played a prominent role in food delivery services such as Uber Eats and Rappi, reports El Economista. It is relevant, now more than ever, to create open spaces for bike mobility or any other massive means of transportation, Berardo Barando, Director for Latin America of the Institute of Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP), told El País.
In the next four years, Mexico City is expected to increase bike path infrastructure to over 600 km. According to Colectivo Cero Emisiones, over 25,000 bike users cycled through the Insurgentes bike path, and now they want to turn the lane into a permanent bike lane. However, Colectivo Cero Emisiones argues that more resources need to be assigned for more permanent bike infrastructure.