Pedal Powered Carrousel

This pedal powered carousel was a regular attraction at a local plaza while I was in Granada this summer.

Like any bike powered gizmo, the technology is both dead simple and somehow totally engrossing: The front end of the bike is just for show (or for storing a stockpile of lollipops that the rider was giving out to the kids as they swung past). Instead of powereing the bike itself, the chain runs down to a drive-shaft that turns the whole platform.

When I first saw the ride it was packed with kids, and surrounded by parents who seemed to be as interested in the machine itself as in their children's giggles. It wasn't quite as popular when I came back to take photos.

There is a woman who makes milkshakes at local events in Vancouver with a bike powered blender and she seems to have the same kind of pull. For whatever reason people are captivated by the simple mechanics of pedal powered machines. Maybe it's a reaction to decidedly untactile digital technology which we now live with most of our time.

For a good bit of digital distraction, try a google image search for “pedal powered.” I'm looking for someone who would like to split the cost of the submarine with me.

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This is a blog for news and views on the future of sustainable cites. A major revamp is in the works. Until then I am keeping this version up as an archive of my past writing.

You can expect occasional updates, but not with the same frequency as in the past.

You can also find my writing on urban redesign and sustainability in ReNew Canada, The Mark, Sustainable Cities Canada, WorldChanging, and other more specialized academic publications.

Info on my consulting work, c.v. and current research focus is all here.