Bicycle Business Breakfast with BikeSA CEO Christian Haag and Dutch Infrastructure expert Arie Vijfhuizen (Royal Haskoning DHV)
This morning, DutchSA and BikeSA organised a breakfast seminar around the economic benefits of cycling. Many thanks go out to the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands for sponsoring the delicious breakfast. A select group of 20 influential leaders of both local business and government organisations gathered at Chianti in Hutt Street, where they were invited to learn more about why cycling is good for the economy.
Dutch expert on bicycle infrastructure Arie Vijfhuizen presented about the benefits of cycling. Everyone probably knows that riding is healthier than driving, but few realise that cyclists spend more money than people in cars! Although cyclists spend less money per visit to the supermarket for instance, they make far more visits per week, spending more money overall. Due to the mobility that cycling brings, these shoppers are more inclined to make an impulsive purchase in the shop down the road.
The economic benefits of cycling are massive. BikeSA CEO Christian Haag pointed out that an average commute by bike equals a $21 benefit to society. A large proportion is due to the reduced pressure on the health system. Another significant contributor is the shopping behaviour of cyclists mentioned above.
The Mayor of Prospect, David O'Loughlin, noted that they are well aware of the economic benefits of cycling over driving, and pointed out that on major roads they reduced the maximum speed from 60 to 40 km/h, making the roads safer for the many cyclists on their daily commute. The council now notices that the shops along these roads don't suffer from the unpopular speed restrictions for drivers. On the contrary the area has become a more social and popular shopping precinct.
A constructive discussion followed, with several guests acknowledging the benefits of cycling, but also acknowledging that some councils are more responsive than others in accommodating cyclists. The consensus was that the benefits of cycling make a strong business case for improving the infrastructure for cyclists. More time and effort is required though to convince the public and the councils of the economic benefits of cycling.
We organise Business and Social events to connect Dutchies and South Australia