So, there is a piece in today’s local paper on the parking crisis in Newcastle. The places discussed are well known to locals: the hospitals, the university, Westfield Kotara and the city centre. I have written about some of these places before and the different ways you can get to them without using a car. I will not take a car to these places because of the parking problem, it is better to get wet and/or to push the bike up a hill than to be 40 minutes late to a doctor’s appointment.
I know a woman who rides to the beach once a week to swim and who, because of the parking problems there, bought herself an ebike. She also commutes to work by bike so the ebike gets plenty of use and she says it is the best thing she has done. An ebike at Bicycles Online, sponsor of this blog, costs just under $1,000. With the cost of parking in the city or at the hospitals or shopping centres, an ebike would pay for itself in a year or so.
The main point the article in the Herald is making is the lost time spent looking for parking. That, and the cost of the petrol used, should also be taken into account if you are making a decision for purely economic reasons. The ebike, if you need it, or beater bike if you don’t want to spend that money and prefer to use your legs more, is a much preferable option to taking the car.