Time Essay: The Great Bicycle Wars

When New York Mayor Edward Koch visited China last winter, he was beguiled by the sight of a million Chinese gliding harmoniously through their streets on bicycles. "I was swept away," Koch said later, "by the thought of what could be." Traffic back home, of course, is a lot denser and meaner than in Peking, but for a time Koch thought that the vision might translate at least partly to New York. A transit strike there last spring swelled the ranks of the city's commuting bicyclists to nearly Chinese proportions. Like Toad of Toad...

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