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Laws about bikes/ebikes riding on sidewalks, China

Laws about bikes/ebikes riding on sidewalks, China

Old Sep 6, 20, 11:32 pm
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Laws about bikes/ebikes riding on sidewalks, China

1. the semi-small street that I live on (Tianping) has bike lanes
2. the larger street 1.5 blocks away (Hengshan) does not

In both cases, bike, ebike, and scooter riders seem to love sidewalks. I imagine that case 2 is legal because riding on a busy road along with cars that are going twice as fast is dangerous, but I'm wondering about case 1 in Shanghai, as well as other cities (e.g. Nanning is particularly scary for pedestrians).
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Old Sep 7, 20, 3:07 am
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Originally Posted by moondog View Post
1. the semi-small street that I live on (Tianping) has bike lanes
2. the larger street 1.5 blocks away (Hengshan) does not

In both cases, bike, ebike, and scooter riders seem to love sidewalks. I imagine that case 2 is legal because riding on a busy road along with cars that are going twice as fast is dangerous, but I'm wondering about case 1 in Shanghai, as well as other cities (e.g. Nanning is particularly scary for pedestrians).
Bikes, scooters, etc are not allowed to be ridden on the sidewalks in Shanghai. Occasionally Iíll see the police out doing an enforcement action and these actions seem to be more common now than before. Not sure about other cities but I imagine tier 1 cities all make this illegal. Even in the absence of bike lanes (eg. Nanjing Road, Beijing Road, Huaihai Road) they are not allowed on the sidewalk.
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Old Sep 7, 20, 5:56 am
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Thanks for the info travelinmanS

Here are my thoughts:
!. never mess with senior citizens
2. since Hengshan Lu was wide sidewalks, but no bike lanes, I don't advocate going after infringers
3. on streets that have both sidewalks and bike lanes, we should take license plate photos of the SF and McD guys...report to their companies, rather than the police
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Old Sep 7, 20, 10:45 pm
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Originally Posted by moondog View Post
1. the semi-small street that I live on (Tianping) has bike lanes
2. the larger street 1.5 blocks away (Hengshan) does not

In both cases, bike, ebike, and scooter riders seem to love sidewalks. I imagine that case 2 is legal because riding on a busy road along with cars that are going twice as fast is dangerous, but I'm wondering about case 1 in Shanghai, as well as other cities (e.g. Nanning is particularly scary for pedestrians).
It's most certainly not legal to ride a bike on Hengshan Rd:


Road sign banning bikes on Hengshan Rd.

In general, if you're in the French concession and you encounter a street with no bike lanes, assume that bikes are forbidden. Of course, there is zero enforcement if a police officer is not present.
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Old Sep 8, 20, 1:24 am
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"On streets that have both sidewalks and bike lanes, we should take license plate photos of the SF and McD guys...report to their companies, rather than the police."

Oh no. My strong advice is that foreigners in China should keep a low profile and not do anything which might seem aggressive, like whipping out your phone and snapping shots of various transgressions you come across. Besides, how is anyone to know what you plan to do with the photos.

(And yes, violating my own rule, I once started taking some video of SF guys tossing packages around like they were footballs, and they were not happy.)
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Old Sep 9, 20, 9:54 pm
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While up here in Harbin, the e-bike couriers can't ride on the footpath because of all the cars parked on it!
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Old Sep 10, 20, 12:05 am
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Sidewalks are always illegal. Decades ago, most Chinese relied on bikes as transportation. None of them were on the sidewalk.
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Old Sep 10, 20, 6:00 am
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Originally Posted by seanpodge View Post
While up here in Harbin, the e-bike couriers can't ride on the footpath because of all the cars parked on it!
Oh, man, I can't count the number of times the 喇叭 was 鸣'd in my direction on the sidewalk. Doesn't even matter, though-- it's bad driving no matter where it's done.
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Old Sep 10, 20, 6:02 am
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Originally Posted by garykung View Post
Sidewalks are always illegal. Decades ago, most Chinese relied on bikes as transportation. None of them were on the sidewalk.
Back then, there weren't many cars driving in the streets.
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Old Sep 10, 20, 11:43 am
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
Back then, there weren't many cars driving in the streets.
Not really. In major cities, nothing has been ever changed.
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Old Sep 10, 20, 11:55 am
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Originally Posted by garykung View Post
Not really. In major cities, nothing has been ever changed.
Michael Oksenberg, a departed professor of mine, described ~1980 Beijing to our class. Of relevance here, is that he was staying at one of the hotels on Chang'an Jie, and looked out his window at 10p; there were NO cars within sight. I didn't make it to China until 1995, but I bought a bike, and was always comfortable riding it.
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Old Sep 10, 20, 1:13 pm
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Originally Posted by moondog View Post
Michael Oksenberg, a departed professor of mine, described ~1980 Beijing to our class. Of relevance here, is that he was staying at one of the hotels on Chang'an Jie, and looked out his window at 10p; there were NO cars within sight. I didn't make it to China until 1995, but I bought a bike, and was always comfortable riding it.
OMG - 1980? China was only opened for a few years back then. And 10 pm?

Major cities in 1995 were a lot different from 1980.
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Old Sep 10, 20, 1:26 pm
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Originally Posted by garykung View Post
OMG - 1980? China was only opened for a few years back then. And 10 pm?

Major cities in 1995 were a lot different from 1980.
1978 might be a better bet because he came here with Jimmy Carter. 1995 was still pretty chill in terms of cars because most people couldn't afford them, and there was only a handful of suppliers. We loved the Miandis because 6 of us could get all the way across town for Y10; I think they were retired the following year.
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Old Sep 10, 20, 11:27 pm
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As an aside, the rise of the sharing bikes which some loathe and others (including myself) love, has made getting around Shanghai much easier than the pre-Mobike days. If you're going anywhere in the city it is almost certainly faster to take the subway and/or a shared bike than to drive.
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Old Sep 11, 20, 1:25 am
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I'm a big fan of the bikes too. Hellobike even lets you use your Alipay account to ride, so it's easy for foreigners who already have that set up. They appear pretty popular with the locals here too, many more people cycling than in previous years, to the point that the local government has been pushed into providing some basic bike paths. Some of the local press seem to have taken a negative attitude to them though, complaining of them clogging up the footpaths (while somehow ignoring all the empty parked cars that have been doing that for years).

I'll be interested to see if the bike companies keep them around when winter comes! In the past, they've withdrawn them around October/November.
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