剑桥雅思14Test1Passage2阅读原文翻译 The growth of bike-sharing schemes around the world 共享单车
剑桥雅思14 Test1 Passage2阅读原文翻译
The original idea for an urban bike-sharing scheme dates back to a summer’s day in Amsterdam in 1965. Provo, the organisation that came up with the idea, was a group of Dutch activists who wanted to change society. They believed the scheme, which was known as the Witte Fietsenplan, was an answer to the perceived threats of air pollution and consumerism. In the centre of Amsterdam, they painted a small number of used bikes white. They also distributed leaflets describing the dangers of cars and inviting people to use the white bikes. The bikes were then left unlocked at various locations around the city, to be used by anyone in need of transport.
Luud Schimmelpennink, a Dutch industrial engineer who still lives and cycles in Amsterdam, was heavily involved in the original scheme. He recalls how the scheme succeeded in attracting a great deal of attention – particularly when it came to publicising Provo’s aims – but struggled to get off the ground. The police were opposed to Provo’s initiatives and almost as soon as the white bikes were distributed around the city, they removed them. However, for Schimmelpennink and for bike-sharing schemes in general, this was just the beginning. ‘The first Witte Fietsenplan was just a symbolic thing,’ he says. ‘We painted a few bikes white, that was all. Things got more serious when I became a member of the Amsterdam city council two years later.’
Luud Schimmelpennink，一名仍然居住在阿姆斯特丹并经常骑行的荷兰工业工程师，曾紧密参与到最初的计划中。他回忆起这项计划如何成功吸引到大量的注意力 – 尤其是在宣传Provo的目的方面- 但未能真正起飞。警察反对Provo的方案。白色自行车刚被放在城市各处，他们就会把车清走。然而，对于Schimmelpennink和广义上的共享单车计划而言，这还仅仅是个开始。“第一次的Witte Fietsenplan仅仅是象征意义的事情”，他说。“我们将一些自行车喷成白色，仅此而已。两年后，当我成为阿姆斯特丹市议会成员时，事情才变得更加认真起来”。
Schimmelpennink seized this opportunity to present a more elaborate Witte Fietsenplan to the city council. ‘My idea was that the municipality of Amsterdam would distribute 10,000 white bikes over the city, for everyone to use,’ he explains. ‘I made serious calculations. It turned out that a white bicycle – per person, per kilometre – would cost the municipality only 10% of what it contributed to public transport per person per kilometre.’ Nevertheless, the council unanimously rejected the plan. ‘They said that the bicycle belongs to the past. They saw a glorious future for the car,’ says Schimmelpennink. But he was not in the least discouraged.
Schimmelpennink抓住这次机会向市议会提交了一份更为详细周密的Witte Fietsenplan计划。“我的想法是，在阿姆斯特丹市内投放10000辆白色自行车供所有人使用”，他解释到。“我进行了严密的计算。结果显示，一辆白色自行车 – 每人，每公里 – 仅仅需要当局投入它在每人每公里公共交通上花费的10%”。然而，议会一致否决了这一计划。“他们说，自行车属于过去，他们看到汽车光辉灿烂的未来”，Schimmelpennink说。但他没有丝毫气馁。
Schimmelpennink never stopped believing in bike-sharing, and in the mid-90s, two Danes asked for his help to set up a system in Copenhagen. The result was the world’s first large-scale bike-share programme. It worked on a deposit: ‘You dropped a coin in the bike and when you returned it, you got your money back.’ After setting up the Danish system, Schimmelpennink decided to try his luck again in the Netherlands – and this time he succeeded in arousing the interest of the Dutch Ministry of Transport. ‘Times had changed,’ he recalls. ‘People had become more environmentally conscious, and the Danish experiment had proved that bike-sharing was a real possibility.’ A new Witte Fietsenplan was launched in 1999 in Amsterdam. However, riding a white bike was no longer free; it cost one guilder per trip and payment was made with a chip card developed by the Dutch bank Postbank. Schimmelpennink designed conspicuous, sturdy white bikes locked in special racks which could be opened with the chip card – the plan started with 250 bikes, distributed over five stations.
Schimmelpennink从未放弃过对共享单车的信念。90年代中期，两个丹麦人请求他帮忙在哥本哈根建立一个这样的系统。结果出现了世界上第一个大型的共享单车项目。它采用押金的方式运行：“你向自行车投入一枚硬币，归还的时候把钱拿回来”。在建立丹麦系统之后，Schimmelpennink决定再在荷兰试试自己的运气。这一次，他成功引起了荷兰交通运输部的兴趣。“时代变了”，他回忆到。“人们对环境更加关心，并且丹麦的实验也证明共享单车计划确实可行”。1999年，一项新的Witte Fietsenplan在阿姆斯特丹推行。然而，骑行白色自行车不再是免费的了。每次旅程的费用为一盾，通过荷兰银行Postbank开发的芯片卡付费。Schimmelpennink设计醒目坚固的白色自行车。它们锁在用芯片卡可以打开的，特殊的车架上 – 计划开始时有250辆自行车，分布在5个站点。
Theo Molenaar, who was a system designer for the project, worked alongside Schimmelpennink. ‘I remember when we were testing the bike racks, he announced that he had already designed better ones. But of course, we had to go through with the ones we had.’ The system, however, was prone to vandalism and theft. ‘After every weekend there would always be a couple of bikes missing,’ Molenaar says. ‘I really have no idea what people did with them, because they could instantly be recognised as white bikes.’ But the biggest blow came when Postbank decided to abolish the chip card, because it wasn’t profitable. ‘That chip card was pivotal to the system,’ Molenaar says. ‘To continue the project we would have needed to set up another system, but the business partner had lost interest.’
Schimmelpennink was disappointed, but – characteristically – not for long. In 2002 he got a call from the French advertising corporation JC Decaux, who wanted to set up his bike-sharing scheme in Vienna. ‘That went really well. After Vienna, they set up a system in Lyon. Then in 2007, Paris followed. That was a decisive moment in the history of bike-sharing.’ The huge and unexpected success of the Parisian bike-sharing programme, which now boasts more than 20,000 bicycles, inspired cities all over the world to set up their own schemes, all modelled on Schimmelpennink’s. ‘It’s wonderful that this happened,’ he says. ‘But financially I didn’t really benefit from it, because I never filed for a patent.’
In Amsterdam today, 38% of all trips are made by bike and, along with Copenhagen, it is regarded as one of the two most cycle-friendly capitals in the world – but the city never got another Witte Fietsenplan. Molenaar believes this may be because everybody in Amsterdam already has a bike. Schimmelpennink, however, cannot see that this changes Amsterdam’s need for a bike-sharing scheme. ‘People who travel on the underground don’t carry their bikes around. But often they need additional transport to reach their final destination.’ Although he thinks it is strange that a city like Amsterdam does not have a successful bike-sharing scheme, he is optimistic about the future. ‘In the ’60s we didn’t stand a chance because people were prepared to give their lives to keep cars in the city. But that mentality has totally changed. Today everybody longs for cities that are not dominated by cars.’
如今阿姆斯特丹有38%的旅程都是通过自行车完成的。与哥本哈根一起，它被认为是世界上对骑行最为友好的两个首都之一 – 但该城市再未设立过另一个Witte Flietsenpan项目。Molenaar认为，这可能是因为阿姆斯特丹的每个居民都已经拥有自己的自行车。然而，Schimmelpennink并不认为这改变了阿姆斯特丹对共享单车项目的需求。“乘地铁出行的人无法抗着自己的自行车走来走去。但他们往往需要额外的交通工具才能抵达自己最终的目的地”。虽然他认为像阿姆斯特丹这样的城市没有成功的共享单车项目很奇怪，但他对未来十分乐观。“60年代的时候，我们没有丝毫机会，因为人们下定决心要在城市中保留汽车。但那种想法已经完全改变。今天每个人都期望城市不再被汽车所主宰”。