The industry-funded Cycling Promotion Fund has today released figures showing a record 1.47 million bicycles sold in 2007 – outselling cars for the eighth consecutive year.
“Soaring petrol prices, concern over climate change, crippling traffic congestion and the desire to lead healthier lifestyles all contributed to the record breaking year,” said Elliot Fishman, policy advisor at the Cycling Promotion Fund.
“Not only are Australians buying more bicycles, they are using them in increasing numbers. Recently released Census figures show that many Australians have rediscovered the bicycle as a great way to commute, with cycling trips to work growing at an average 22 per cent across Australian capital cities; with Melbourne soaring 42 per cent between 2001 and 2006."
The heaviest growth in cycling is occurring in the wealthier, inner city areas which have superior bicycle infrastructure.
“Many outer suburban areas have dismal bicycle infrastructure and have experienced flat growth rates. As petrol prices continue to skyrocket and the need to fight climate change becomes more urgent, all levels of government need to increase their level of investment in bicycle infrastructure and encouragement programmes,” said Fishman.
The Cycling Promotion Fund membership fee is 0.25 per cent of the yearly turnover of bicycles, bicycle related parts and accessories and cycling related services. As in the UK (the equivalent is Bike Hub), membership is voluntary.