23 July 2011

Copenhagenize's Airport Shuttle in Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro - Airport Bicycle Shuttle from Copenhagenize on Vimeo.
There are very few cities in the world where you can get picked up at the airport by friends on bicycles and then ride into the city on safe, separated bicycle infrastructure. Rio de Janeiro, however, is one of those cities. The Santos Dumont airport in Rio de Janeiro
is a smaller airport located only 2 km from Rio's downtown business center. After my talk and meetings in Sao Paulo for Copenhagenize Consulting I flew into Santos Dumont.

Some friends were picking me up by bike. On a cargo trike that would bring a folding bike to the airport and carry my baggage back to my friend Tiago's flat in Le Blon. Another friend, Ze Lobo, from Associação Transporte Ativo - Active Transportation came along, too. The weather was great and we set out in the late afternoon. A hundred metres or so from the terminal we hopped onto a bike path and never left bicycle infrastructure for most of the 16+ kilometre ride.

Okay, except when we took a detour to a bar to have a beer and some snacks, but that was through a quiet, residential neighbourhood with 30 km/h zones.

Here's the route we took.

View Rio de Janeiro Bicycle Airport Shuttle in a larger map

What a brilliant way to arrive in a city - to ride a bike through it. You can ride from the airport in Copenhagen and Amsterdam, of course, but there are also great train or metro connections. In Rio it is brilliant that you can ride if you don't want to take the metro or a taxi or bus.