Proudly part of the cargo bike revolution
The Cycling Gardeners are the first cargo bike-powered gardening company in Edinburgh.
Our love for the outdoors goes well beyond the gardens that we look after. We’re committed to reducing our environmental impact wherever we can. When we learnt about how the cargo bike movement is transforming businesses, we knew we had to join in.
We’re one of hundreds of businesses around the UK ditching petrol and diesel vehicles for clean, low carbon transport. Cargo bikes reduce air pollution, ease congestion, use fewer materials in manufacturing, and they’re fun to get around on too.
You might have already seen our gardeners pedalling their way to their next garden in the city of Edinburgh – give us a wave if you spot us!
What are cargo bikes?
Cargo bikes are bicycles that are designed to carry large loads. They’re increasingly popular with package couriers, food delivery companies, and even medical supply carriers for transporting goods across the city – and now we’ve added gardeners into the mix.
We use a three wheel tricycle bike, with a container that’s large enough to carry our gardening equipment to your garden. On the rare occasion that we need a larger vehicle, we opt for electric-powered vehicles to keep our carbon footprint down.
Why we switched to cargo bikes
Cargo bikes are faster
Cargo bikes are essentially big, glorified bicycles, which means they can use cycle lanes, dodge traffic, get to the front of queues and take advantage of shortcuts around the city.
That makes them much faster than cars and other vehicles – in London, the cargo bike start-up Pedal Me was found to get around 1.61 times faster than an average van. In a tightly packed city like Edinburgh, cargo bikes are the perfect nimble transport.
We can reach more tenement gardens
Many gardening companies struggle to service tenement gardens in central Edinburgh, because the cost and time lost for parking large vehicles makes it unprofitable. The average van driver spends an extra 9 minutes per job just finding a parking space.
We struggled with the same problem before we discovered cargo bikes. Now we can park up quickly and cheaply, and spend more time looking after more inner city tenement gardens in Edinburgh.
Cargo bikes ease congestion
If you’re an Auld Reekie resident, you’ll know the horror of getting stuck in an Edinburgh traffic jam. Edinburgh has been named the most congested city in the UK at least four times – and we believe that cargo bikes could play a big role in easing that pressure on our roads.
In 2021, 67% of all trips in the UK in a car or van were under five miles. That’s a lot of traffic building up congestion on our roads for the sake of a short trip. Cargo bikes are one great way to swap out vans and cars for those shorter inner city journeys.
Cargo bikes reduce air pollution
Cargo bikes are a clean, sustainable mode of transport with zero carbon emissions, which makes them ideal for a net zero future powered by renewables.
Transport for London estimates that for every light goods vehicle replaced by a cargo bike in central London, 1 tonne of CO2 and almost 3 kilograms of NOx are saved per year – just imagine what a whole fleet of cargo bikes could achieve!
That’s especially important since Scotland introduced its low emissions zones. Edinburgh will start limiting polluting vehicles on its roads from June 2024 to help improve the city’s air quality. We’re ready to champion the environmental and health benefits of active travel when that gets introduced next year.
The cargo bike movement is growing
The Cargo Bike Festival has named the 2020s the Decade of the Cargo Bike, and with good reason. Cargo bike sales increased by 40% between 2020 and 2021. With companies like Amazon and Raleigh now investing in cargo bikes, that number will only keep shooting up.
Edinburgh is already a buzzing hub for cargo bike businesses. One charity we love is the Cargo Bike Movement, which delivers food packages to local households who are experiencing food poverty, all with the power of the pedal.
They’ve also set up the Cargo Bike Movement Hub, which loans cargo bikes free-of-charge to whoever needs one.
The Edinburgh Festival of Cycling lets people book and hire out their Urban Arrow cargo bike when it’s not in use during the festival.
And then of course, there’s us, The Cycling Gardeners. We’re proud to be part of a thriving eco-minded community of bicycle enthusiasts in Edinburgh who are transforming the way that businesses move through urban spaces.