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Thursday, May 9, 2013

Osaka Midosuji Bicycle Lane

Daimaru Department Store Midosuji大阪御堂筋自転車レーン

Rumors are starting to swirl about new bicycle and pedestrian lanes along one of the most stunning boulevards in Japan.

Osaka's Midosuji runs north to south through the heart of Shinsaibashi and down to Namba.

It is lined with department stores, consulates, boutiques. On side streets are many of the city's best bars and restaurants.

Since Osaka is mostly flat and compact - both unlike Tokyo - it is a great city for cycling.

The one exception is Midosuji. Sidewalks are wide, but with many pedestrians it is not a good place to ride. Indeed, let the boulevardiers have their piece of pavement for strolling.

Mayor Hashimoto, a runty firebrand ex-lawyer, however may change that.

According to NHK tv news, the city is in the planning stages of creating safer walking and cycling spaces. Construction is set to be complete in two years.


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