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Pedaling nonsense

Pedaling nonsense

One UAE paper thinks office workers in the UAE may be inspired to start cycling to work. Kipp wonders if they have gone mad.

June 28, 2010 3:42 by

Kipp has fond memories of cycling as a child (aside from the near loss of an eye riding a chopper and a damp incident involving a trike, a lake, and Kipp’s inquisitive personality), and we’re still partial to a little pedal once in a while.
Which is one of the things that bothers us about living here in the UAE – the country is simply not geared up for cyclists. At least, we didn’t think it was. The National reports that Yas Marina Circuit is now open to cyclists every Tuesday evening for a weekly track night, to give enthusiasts a safe place to ride.
Kipp quite fancies that – we’ve been lucky enough to take a tour of the grand prix track, and it really is stunning. But the paper goes a bit far when it claims in an editorial that the event might trigger a trend, and we could see UAE residents cycling to work.
“In Japan, cycling is so common that they had to invent underground bicycle parking to accommodate the enormous number of Japanese – from office worker to CEO – who bike to work,” says the paper.
Well, we guess it would be one way to thin the workforce a little. Companies could buy every employee a bike, then insist that they cycle to work each day. Over time, thanks to the UAE roads, they would have less and less people showing up to work. It would certainly save the bother of layoffs, though health insurance claims may affect the company’s premium.
Road safety aside, there is one other reason you won’t catch Kipp cycling to work. Because when we set out to work this morning the temperature was almost 40 degrees. 40 degrees! Even if we survived the roads, the heat would probably kill us. And if we survived the heat… well of course, like almost every office in this town, this one doesn’t have a shower.
Cycling in Dubai as a system of mass transit is a long, long way off if you ask Kipp.

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