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Joyride: Pedaling Toward A Healthier Planet Paperback – August 15, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 225 pages
  • Publisher: Cadence Press; First edition (August 15, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615384110
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615384115
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #338,592 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

A witty, poignant memoir from one of the most important figures in America's urban bicycling renaissance. --Jeff Mapes: Author of Pedaling Revolution

Anyone interested in changing their life or community for the better is going to love Joyride. It tells the story of how we transformed Portland into a livable, thriving cycling mecca and Mia Birk is the right person to tell it. --Earl Blumenauer, Member of Congress

Mia Birk helped shape remarkable transportation changes in Portland that have made it the #1 cycling city in the country. Joyride is a great chronicle of the vision and tenacity that it takes to transform a city's mindset and infrastructure, and is a great handbook for those of us who want to bring change to our own cities. --Angela Hunt, Dallas, Texas City Council

About the Author

Mia Birk is the award-winning CEO and co-owner of Alta Planning + Design, a 72-person international firm dedicated to creating active communities where bicycling and walking are safe, healthy, fun, and normal daily activities. She has been involved across North America in hundreds of bicycle, pedestrian, trail, and Safe Routes to School plans, projects, and programs.

Mia Birk is also Adjunct Professor at Portland State University, where she co-founded the Initiative for Bicycle and Pedestrian Innovation. She is a co-founder of the Cities for Cycling project of the National Association for City Transportation Officials and Association for Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals. She was the Portland Bicycle Program Manager from 1993-99, Transportation Program Manager at the International Institute for Energy Conservation from 1990-1993, and has a Masters Degree in International Relations from Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.

Birk lives in Portland, OR, with her two children ages 11 and 8. Bicycling is her main means of transportation, and a winning strategy for maintaining her family's health, safety, budget, and community connection.


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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Mia writes from her heart in a witty, conversational style.
mslovell
Ship them off to Portland where they can be happy and make the Northwest wealthier... Ban this book and make it a bestseller!
Howard T. Maher
I became curious about her book "Joyride" and have just finished reading it.
Rolf Stengl

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Howard T. Maher on December 23, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If some of the bike coordinators and/or traffic engineers and/or a few bicycling nuts in any town or city in America got their hands on this book we might have a revolution, albeit green, on our hands! Why would we want to cut down on our dependence on foreign oil? Why would we want healthier adults and children? Why would we want fewer cholesterol/high blood pressure pills from our wonderful drug companies? Why would we want safer streets, less crime, less graffiti, less drug peddling? Why would we want to promote something positive for the family-unit? Why would we want bike trails that actually go somewhere? Why would anyone want 'complete' streets where cars and bicycles and pedestrians all thrive? Why would we want alternatives on how to get somewhere? Why do we want the feeling of freedom that a bicycle brings to kids and adults alike?

This book isn't a literary gem on armchair travels, this is a dangerous blueprint for action! This book shows the 1% inspiration and the 99% perspiration that goes into a revolution... Mia is playing with fire here... If we don't ban this book now we may have to deal with a happy, healthier, wealthier citizenry... Oh, and wait, if our employers read this book they might put in showers and bike racks and fund bike paths leading to our places of employment since they could pay us a lot less since a sizable chunk of our income wouldn't be spent on a car any more and costly health insurance programs... I swear that if the things that Mia has helped do in Portland came to her hometown of Dallas/Richardson, we would have a real live revolution in thought and action here... We might have one of those 'build it and they will come' moments... Why would we want more people moving here to enjoy Texas and help us become healthier and wealthier? Ship them off to Portland where they can be happy and make the Northwest wealthier... Ban this book and make it a bestseller!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 6, 2010
Format: Paperback
I moved to Portland four years ago with my wife and then 3 year old. I had no idea the network of bike paths, bike lanes that Portland had. Moving from Colorado I assumed Portland, with its wet weather, could not be as bicycle friendly as many cities and towns in Colorado. I was very wrong and quickly learned that urban cycling in Portland is probably the best stateside. What I didn't know, and took for granted for several years, was the work that was involved in getting our wonderful bike lanes, bike trails and safety network built.
Mia's book is fun to read, especially when you recognise the streets, locations and routes she gives the history of.
Mia's Texas roots make the book even more fun to read as so many of us consider Portland and Dallas Texas probably the two most opposed cities in the country. What we have in common is people who ride bicycles and understand the positive impact on health and our environment more two wheel transportation can have.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 19, 2010
Format: Paperback
I don't normally like books of this genre but this is one large exception. Mia Birk captures all the best parts of one person's adventure to enact change in our intractable society. She demonstrates an indomidible spirit matched by few. Story after story continued to inspire me long after I put it down. The writing was crisp and humerous. I strongly recommend it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Tod Brilliant on November 11, 2010
Format: Paperback
If you're reading this review because you're on the fence about BUYING this book, stop reading and click BUY. If you ride a bike, like bikes, trikes, hikes or even some dude named Mike (there are many, some are even in the book), you'll enjoy Mia's detailed account of arm-wrestling an entire city into the future. As a former resident of Portland, I also found the background on the city's continuing transformation more than engaging. It's $20, less than a pair of spandex bike shorts. Buy it. Love it. Share it. Review it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By hallstot on February 28, 2013
Format: Paperback
This book is incredibly poorly written. It streams along as if it were a bubbly diary entry. I'm a graduate student in an urban design program, and as someone who seeks actual, actionable knowledge from my course readings--I have never been so disappointed. This is a book for someone casually interested in utilitarian cycling.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By S. Koonce on October 11, 2010
Format: Paperback
As someone who isn't in the transportation business (my husband is an engineer), I don't often get excited about the technical stuff he brings home and wants to talk about. This is the first book that I have found accessible enough to read and enjoy. The book is focused on a variety of actions that cities (or neighborhoods) should take to improve our ability to bike and walk in our communities. It's both entertaining and educational. I found that I could read the chapters quickly and take away ideas that were common sense, but not immediately clear to citizens wanting to make a difference. There are some great themes in the book (you don't need spandex to ride & it should be family friendly) that need to be considered by communities consistently in order to make a difference.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Hans W. Gasterland on March 2, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This story could have been so boring, but it was fun to read, fast paced, inspiring and entertaining even when she was revealing her well-founded frustration. The bottom line is that even "totally car-oriented" people can end up realizing that what helps bikes helps EVERYBODY. I've tried to give this to my political representatives but they say they can't accept gifts. Maybe if I send it anonymously!
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