Beijing’s Trikes

Ember’s post about bikes in Beijing interested me quite a bit. Consequently, when I stumbled on Mac Kane’s photo essay called Beijing Trikes, I was curious. Kane claims that despite numerous cars and plentiful traffic jams, Beijing has retained a strong connection to both the bicycle and the tricycle. Working the narrow alleys of the hutong districts where cars have a difficult time maneuvering, bikes and trikes are used for everything from hauling garbage, to taxi service, to serving as an impromptu shop.

When I lived in Zambia, no one ever cycled for pleasure — a bike was a tool, a means to an end. In Beijing, clearly, biking is not a leisure activity. As Kane points out, bicycles are for work.

Given their emphasis on functionality over looks, many bikes have been modified or custom built to fit the demands of its owner.

For more images of China’s trikes, check out the rest of Kane’s series.