In November 2011, the City of Bordeaux in France began a special consultation with its citizens. In an exercise that could easily have created a Homer mobile, participants were asked to make suggestions on what they would like to see included in the design of a new town bike. Over 300 citizens shared their ideas, which designer Philippe Starck has now used as the inspiration for what has been provisionally called the City PIBAL Streamer - an eye-catching concept where riders can opt to sit and pedal like on a traditional bike, or stand on the platform and use like a scooter.
Bordeaux has seen the number of cyclists in the city triple in the last 15 years thanks to a comprehensive tram network and numerous city center traffic restrictions, and it's said that more than ten percent of movement within the municipality is undertaken by bike. Drop hire bike points are strategically placed throughout the area, and it is to this system that the new Bordelais-inspired town bike/scooter will be added.
The City PIBAL Streamer design concept was recently unveiled at the Cyclab 2 event (which highlights the future of cycling in the city and beyond) by Starck and the Mayor of Bordeaux, Alain Juppé. The result is said to be both durable and functional, with lots of room for onboard storage. It will feature a lightweight aluminum frame, at the center bottom of which is a standing platform with the central frame tubing and two additional supports running under it. There'll be brightly-colored wheels, hub braking and automatic, integrated LED lighting.
Manufacture of the new design will now be undertaken by Peugeot, who has over 120 years of design and manufacture experience. The company's engineers are to assemble a run of 3,000 bikes for the City of Bordeaux for end of year availability. It's during this period that any technical issues relating to the concept will be tackled - such as frame stress points and core strength.