Monday, 25 June 2012



The population of Japan is 127 million people, 27 million people live in Tokyo. It is estimated that there are as many as 86 million bicycles in Japan!! Most people have the same type of bike. It looks like a girls bike with a basket on the front.
A common Japanese bicycle

Even with the amzing public transport they have, bicycles are still a common choice for transportation. You can see many different people using bikes, from business men wearing suits, mothers balancing their children and carrying groceries, school children, grandparents,etc . Everyone can been see around Japan riding their bikes. It's not a law in Japan to wear a bike helmet!

With so many bicycles, there are of course some problems with bicycle parking. Many people ride their bicycle to the train station and leave it parked at the station as they ride a train to work. As you may imagine, there are many, many bicycles parked at every station!

Outside a train station

where is my bike??

Eco Cycle Parking

To deal with the problem of bicycle parking, the Japanese have created the Eco Cycle parking system. It is a system of underground bicycle parking which reduces the space needed for bicycle parking. The Eco Cycle can store up to 144 bicycles underground - retrieval and storage in seconds. The longest it takes is 10 seconds

underground bicycle parking

These 'Gates' is where bicycles are parked and retrieved

At each gate there is a simple card reader. You have to take out a monthly contract to use these ones but there are some around Tokyo where anybody can park their bicycle.

The young lady swipes her card and a few seconds later the doors open. She docks the front wheel of her bicycle

and it gets pulled in to the dock. Doors close swiftly after.

This is what the bicycle park looks like underground.

The Eco Cycle caters for bicycles which are less than 1,950mm in length and less than 1,250mm in height.
It costs 2,600 yen for a monthly ticket to use the park. Students pay 1,300 yen.


  1. the Eco Cycle Parking is awsome

  2. What happens if there is a power cut? how do you get your bike back ?
    Ben 2b.

    1. I'm not sure Ben, I guess you'd have to wait until the power came back on.

  3. Charlotte.H 6S27 June 2012 at 18:23

    Wow!I don't think I would put my bike in that eco cycle.What if it gets lost?Also, in the train station parking picture I can't see and chains so no one will take your bike so is there anything to keep you bike safe?

    Charlote 6S

  4. wow an eco cycle parking! there would be so many bikes! but yeah, what if the power get's cut off? also i think it is just like the car parks too :)

  5. I think its a really good idea to have an eco cycle parking. Expessially if there is that many bikes. Yeah and what happens when the power gets cut off the bikes would get stuck. I think here in AUSTRALIA we should have an eco cycle parking thig but with cars seeing there are loads of cars in AUSTRALIA
    Lili 5C

  6. what if the bikes get lost in the train station park.