I don't know about you but if Burlington didn't have so many hills (or at least the big one that goes down into town) I would be cruising around town on my ten speed like its nobody's business. Call me lazy but I would much rather walk up that behemoth than pedal. Not only because my bicycle is a rustbucket and the chain repeatedly slips off the rear sprocket (it builds character) but it's just a pain.
If I lived in Trondheim, Norway, coincidentally also a college town, I would be whipping around corners on my two-wheeled machine like Jimmie Johnson at Talladega. The reason is that they have the Trampe. The Trampe is a bicycle escalator of sorts (check it out here. Notice the very colorful and technical illustration). What you do is swipe your card and a little foot rest comes out that you place your right foot on. You are then pushed up the hill without having to get off your bike. It's brilliant!
Not only is this thing super sweet, it promotes green transportation. According to treehugger.com, a recent survey says that 41% of the lift users say that they are cycling more due to the lift. Except for the unforgiving hills, Burlington is a biker friendly city. I see more cyclists observing the rules of the road here than drivers obeying stop signs back home in Massachusetts. It's about time we reward these hardworking, obedient and green cyclists.
I propose that we throw one of these bad larrys on Main St. It's already the busiest street in Vermont so why not make it a little more hectic? We can even take it one step further. On Friday and Saturday nights seats can be installed on the moving foot holders and intoxicated people can be charged a premium to get a ride back to the top. It will pay for itself in a weekend!
You heard it here first! Burlington, Vermont needs a bike escalator! Tell your friends!
Click here to see this modern feat of engineering in action!