West Chester's Hybrid Cycles Encourages Main Liners to put the Pedal to the Metal

Power-assisted pedaling means this isn’t your average spin around the block.

Continued from Radnor’s Environmental Advisory Coucil.

We’ve all heard of hybrid cars—but hybrid bicycles? Yep. The goal of West Chester’s Hybrid Cycles is to get you on an electric bike to experience what can’t be appreciated by browsing a website, paging through a catalog or even visiting a store. You’ll find them at farmers’ markets, street fairs, green expos and the like, encouraging all to take a ride. “Once you ride one, you’ll love it,” says Jim Wylie, managing partner and self-described “annoying environmentalist.”

Green credentials: Biking is one of the best ways to reduce car miles and the pollution, congestion and parking issues associated with auto-centric communities. And with an e-bike, lack of strength or endurance is no longer an excuse.

Green innovation: The Panasonic center-drive system in Hybrid Cycles’ German-made Kettler bikes is extremely efficient, providing up to 50 miles of power-assisted pedaling per charge with three different assist settings.

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Bragging rights: A customer who lives in Berwyn suffers from Huntingdon’s Disease, which limits the strength in his legs. His e-bike provides him with extra power for starts and hills. Another commutes from Bala Cynwyd to Norristown on the Schuylkill River Trail. “I think of him whenever I’m sitting in traffic on the Schuylkill,” Wylie says. “There’s definitely an increasing green awareness in our area. People on the Main Line get it. If green options are presented to them at a good value, they’ll choose the green option almost every time.”

Green dream: To eliminate suburb-to-suburb commuting.“I want people to live where they work and work where they live,” Wylie says. “Spending two hours or more of your day commuting is crazy—unless you’re getting your day’s exercise at the same time.”

To learn more, visit hybrid-cycles.com or call (610) 212-3070.

Click here to return to Green Awards 2012.

Our Best of the Main Line Elimination Ballot is open through February 22!