An eco-friendly electric bamboo cargo bike launched in the Nepalese capital Kathmandu is helping locals and tourists to get around the city emission-free while improving poor air quality.
Kathmandu-based bamboo builders Abari teamed up with American professor Lance Rake of Kansas University to design the Habre Eco Bike in response to issues of urban congestion and pollution in the city of Kathmandu.
Made by local artisans using regional bamboo, the bike aims to provide a green alternative to gas-guzzling vehicles, reducing air pollutants and therefore improving the health of citizens.
Each cargo bike has bamboo suspension, bamboo frames and a powerful electric hub motor ideal for carrying cargo and passengers. It’s modelled on the Danish Christiania cargo bike with one larger rear wheel and two smaller front wheels, swapping out the aluminium used on the Christiania frames for sturdy and lively bamboo. Early prototypes of the Habre bike had steel frames, with bamboo leaf springs fitted to test for comfort and durability under load.
Lance Rake was awarded Fullbright funding to develop the cargo bike in 2019, with the aim of providing an alternative for couriers and even taxi drivers in an effort to greatly reduce fossil fuels around Kathmandu’s historic sites.
Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She writes about lifestyle including sustainable and green living. She also offers content services to businesses and individuals at Rosamedea.com