The 2 mile challenge

This is a reproduction of the two mile arc from my place of abode in the northern suburbs of Brisbane. It's taken from the great service available here.

Click on the map to get an enlarged view in separate window/tab.

Two miles is so very American but for those challenged by the concept, 2 miles equals 3.21868 kilometres. To walk the radius --assuming you are walking in a straight line -- would take 40 minutes ( Walking at 3mph average walking pace -- ie: taking 20 minutes to walk one mile.)

Nonetheless, this arc in the main comprises a good part of my daily life: where I live, shop, visit the doctors, where my kids went to school, where I recreate, and interact with what is crudely referred to as my local community.

While the arc may take 40 minutes to walk it would take much less by bicycle -- or by kickbike -- I guess I can kick the radius on my kickbike at 10-15kmh (a casual cruise speed)which suggests I can reach the perimeter in one quarter the time it takes to walk it: 8-10 minutes. Given the terrain and the cross streets in this locale I think that's a bit too generous as a norm, so I think 15-20 minutes is a more realistic estimate of the time travel required. But I at least halve the travel time compared to walking.

The point being that most of these journeys are bike-able. I would have a cartage problem -- but I have discussed that before and related how I deploy the kickbike as a mule. When I do a 'big shop' I get the groceries home delivered.

I also 'bike it' to the local rail head so in a sense I could replicate the same travel arc at the other end of any train journey (eg: to the Brisbane CBD or to the beach at Sandgate) and enjoy the same arc of access.

I guess the lesson here is that if you chomp up your travel grid into manageable bits (which also reflects by default your transit lifestyle anyway ) --and envisage it as territory you can master-- there's an inbuilt logic in bike usage and bike reliance. Rather than amorphous and scatter gun, your potential cycling journeys make geographical and time usage sense.

If you were to compare a bike journey within the arc with a car journey over the same distance you'd find that there wouldn't be that much between the options in regard to time if you have to factor in car start up then parking at the other end. There would indeed be a large margin of difference between riding and walking the 2 miles but potentially the bike could travel the distance faster than a car if the access pathways were there --such as a dedicated bike track.

Maybe 5+ minutes of a car journey is taken up with:
getting into the vehicle + putting on the seat belts + inserting the keys into the ignition + backing out of the driveway + finding a park at the other end + undoing the set belts and getting out...
so the sort of optional advantage that the car may seem to possess is not a certainty.

So there is indeed a challenge!


Post a Comment