Barcelona: A New Peril

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Jun 26th, 2007, 01:53 PM
  #41
 
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I live in Barcelona and I'm somewhat surprised at the point of view of the new bicycle-transportation option as a 'Peril'!!! I listen to NPR and usually agree w/their views, but if they really said that, then I'm afraid they don't have the whole story.

I'm from New York and quite frankly I've had more run-ins there w/fast-food delivery guys in general who ride at top speeds on the sidewalks, than I've ever had here (and yes, in Amsterdam I was reprimanded by more than one biker when I unknowingly walked into a bike lane). Also, I think that the 'Bicing' option (the name of the new bike transport system) is an amazingly civil and environmentally-friendly option for all who live here and don't have bicycles (I don't have one because I don't have anywhere in my building where I can store one, and my apt. is a 3-story walk-up w/a narrow staircase), and I have signed up for 2 accounts, so that I can have a bicycle at my disposal for the year (for 6€/$10 that can't be beat), plus when I have friends visit, they can have one, too. Because it's not designed for tourists, the Bicing website even recommends local bike-rental shops for those who need a bike for at least a full day or more, and the number of shops have grown exponentially in Barcelona over the last couple of years, so finding bikes is not a problem. The city also sends out trucks to collect the bikes every nite so that they don't get stolen. If you've lived here as long as I have, you would agree on 2 things: One, that there will ALWAYS be cyclists who ride on sidewalks, everywhere in the world (this was already happening here before the Bicing stations were installed), and Two, and most important: The proliferation of bicycles around the city of Barcelona will never be as perilous as allowing teenagers or young, drunk and drugged adults to drive scooters around the city at top speeds, placing their own lives and the lives of others in danger, something that can be seen mostly on weekend nights.

Regarding street-crime, this is something that happens mostly to tourists, mostly in the touristy areas and sites. It's sad and unfortunate, but this can happen anywhere, and for that you just have to be very aware and keep your eyes wide open at all times, don't carry your wallet in your back pocket, and if you can avoid it, also don't carry a backpack with easy-to-open zippers on your back; turn it to your front so that you can have your eye on it (plus let's face it: There are plently of 'stupid' tourists who have their faces buried in their wide-opened maps right in the middle of the street, and are completely unaware of anything going on around them).

It also happens to be a reality that is worse in Spain and Italy, being that we are geographically closest to North African countries, so we get the brunt of immigrants from these countries, from where so many perpetrators of these crimes come.

I hope that this explains more of a local's view of this situation.
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Jun 26th, 2007, 01:57 PM
  #42
 
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Some people just love talking negatively about other people's backyard that they forget their own.
We have a bunch of British expats who are working illegally in Hollywood making a comfortable living. Yet they whine and complain about California when they meet in a local pub. I wished they would move back to where they come from if they are that miserable here.
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Jun 27th, 2007, 02:05 AM
  #43
 
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bcnfox- we see as the thread unfolds that pQ was deliberately trying to make it sound bad, so he could couple the non-existent bike problem with BCN streetcrime:
Quoting pQ: """The gist of the story was how successful the bike program was, not its danger, which i may be guilty of overhyping in my OP rather than dwelling on such a great program."""
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Jun 27th, 2007, 02:07 AM
  #44
 
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laclaire- just sent you a message on "L-O-G".
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Jun 27th, 2007, 02:55 AM
  #45
 
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Mystery solved. Travel_buzzing knows her stuff (though I promise I will not beat anyone up for calling me a sitting duck).

Going back to bikes, this morning I did not have my bike to get back home, so I took the metro. I have not been down there in months and it was pretty interesting. From Pza. Espanya to my house on bike takes me almost exactly 10 minutes door to door. Using the metro it took me 21 minutes (waiting for the train for 7 of them). I have studied things like that before and the bike always comes out winning. It is just the best way to get around here. Makes wearing a skirt hard, though.

As for Bicing, there is a good review of it here:

http://bcnweek.com/review47.html

And bcnfox, I agree wholeheartedly. . . bikers will always hit the sidewalk, but they should do so cautiously, and biking is way better than drunk driving. That said, drunk biking is a problem I see on the horizon. . .
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Jun 27th, 2007, 04:27 AM
  #46
 
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the metro this morning was a nightmare. completely cattle-herded as there are works going on. everyone crushed together, as bad as saturday night for san juan...hey i came off on both occasions with my belongings intact! the chances!
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Jun 27th, 2007, 06:48 AM
  #47
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Quoting pQ: """The gist of the story was how successful the bike program was, not its danger, which i may be guilty of overhyping in my OP rather than dwelling on such a great program."""

if only you could give a bit as well!
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Jun 28th, 2007, 02:56 AM
  #48
 
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but you did not even start this post being misinformed by the report- this is complete "disinformation" by you and very anti-fodors
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Jun 28th, 2007, 06:53 AM
  #49
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please explain what the disinformation is - you seem to thing that muggings in Barcelona are on a par with any European city - please do a google search: Barcelona Muggings and you'll find hundreds of reports

and then do a search of say Paris Muggings, and other cities and there are nearly none.

please - what is the disinformation that you charge me with. And anti-Fodor's - what gibberish is that?

i was ready to quit - re-energized to continue as long as you charge me with disinformation - i will supply as much information on the situation as possible.

Muggings - News - Times Topics - The New York Times - Narrowed by ...Barcelona Crime.

Benjamin Bederson letter disputes Spanish Tourist Office's response to March 31 letter about muggings in Barcelona, Spain ...
topics.nytimes.com/.../m/muggings/index.html?query=CRIME%20AND%20CRIMINALS&field=des &match=exact
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Jun 28th, 2007, 08:14 AM
  #50
 
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i think it's quite clear that i was talking about the biking report
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Jun 28th, 2007, 08:19 AM
  #51
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'disinformation' - did you read the stuff on the other thread that one Barcelonan resident who rides her bike said about the chaotic bike lanes and sidewalks?

and besides i was relaying an NPR report that interviewed locals - it could be misleading but i'm not necessarily buying that from you after you obviously 'misinformed' comments on the mugging problem, which you seem to think does not exist more here than other places in Europe - much more so why should i take your take on bikes? Like why should anyone believe W anymore?
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Jun 28th, 2007, 08:35 AM
  #52
 
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no you twisted around a report, which you have said, was actually focusing on the success of the bicing, and turned it into something bad, using only negative quotes and a title "barcelona-a new peril".
that is disinformation. spin. sensationalism. a very bad attempt at PR.
and the only motive- so you can turn the topic onto mugging, which, as you well know, I have never said there is no street crime.

why dont i say it one more time, very clearly just so i dont have to come back and correct you

1. there is no problem with bicing. it is environmentally friendly, reduces car traffic, does not increase the amount of cyclists (if it has, only to an insignificant, unnoticeable amount). this includes people who cycle on the pavements. there will always be people cycling on pavements, even when there are cycle routes.

2. yes people get robbed. tourism theft is directly proportional to the amount of tourists in a city.
Barcelona is the cultural capital of europe. go figure.

3. thankfully i do not live in the mindset where i am "inevitably" going to get robbed/mugged here at some point, which lets me enjoy life in barcelona.

4. You are not sensible. You need to not be making negative stories out of positive ones (bicing), to fufill your own mugging-story-shovelling agenda.

Sorry but no.
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Jun 28th, 2007, 12:55 PM
  #53
 
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Hello fellow adventurers. Does anybody have any suggestions as to how one should spend a 4-day stay in Barcelona and what adjacent cities are worth seeing? We will be there in September 8, 2007. Also, are there bullfights in September?
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Jun 28th, 2007, 01:00 PM
  #54
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<Barcelona is the cultural capital of europe.>

really - hope you don't say that to a Londoner, Parisian, Florentine, Roman, etc.

maybe 'a culture capital' but THE - enough said.
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Jun 28th, 2007, 01:02 PM
  #55
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WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green ...In only one month the Bicing Barcelona have more 5000 members. In Barcelona city centre you can't park the car more 2 hours (except if you a neighbour) on ...
www.worldchanging.com/archives//006444.html

Productivity, Performance, Fitness and a work/life balance: Bicing ...If you have a moment, click this link: Bicing Barcelona. ... Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Bicing Barcelona: ...
jasonwomack.typepad.com/working_outwhile_youre_ou/2007/04/worldchanging_t.html

‘Bicing’ offers bike rentals in Barcelona for only 6€ per yearBicing: (Almost) Free Cycling in Barcelona, Spain | Back in the 1960s there was a hippy experiment. White bicycles were left around for anyone to use.
http://www.barcelonareporter.com/......ly_6_per_year/
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Jun 28th, 2007, 01:19 PM
  #56
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TAYNOS - Start a fresh post with that title and you'll get a passel of responses - only buzz and moi are reading this by now hackneyed thread so i'm afraid you won't elicit responses on here.
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Jun 29th, 2007, 01:05 AM
  #57
 
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taynos, the bullring is currently being made into a mall. go do a search for barcelona, or read about the sights in each area:
http://www.way2stay.com/area-info-Barcelona-en-52.htm

pQ- "A" cultural capital then but at least do it properly- LIVERPOOL is currently "THE" capital of culture.
but that ain't the point.
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Jun 29th, 2007, 04:49 AM
  #58
 
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also taynos: http://www.ivebeenthere.co.uk/search...erseorder=true
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