The British government is keen to bring back the work culture devastated by the threats of COVID-19. It is a dangerous disease, has taken a heavy toll of lives all over the world, and has paralyzed society.

Downing Street wants to ease the lockdown introduced to keep the people safe from infection. It intends to introduce changes and encourage employees to opt for modes of Travel that will guarantee social distancing. Once that is achieved, it will go a long way to eliminate fears associated with commuting to work in trains or other forms of public transport like buses. The government feels lockdown cannot continue indefinitely, and the country has to come out of its shell.

It must direct its attention to bring back normalcy. COVID-19 has played havoc with the travel and tourism sectors.

Sky News says Transport Secretary Grant Shapps used Downing Street briefing on COVID-19 to put forth some plans on the subject. The salient point is to encourage commuters to opt for alternate modes of transport to go to work.

These could be by cycle or by walking. The idea is to reduce dependency on normal modes of transportation like trains and buses.

These have a higher risk of people contracting the disease. Moreover, the capacity in these modes could reduce drastically to adapt to the social-distancing rules.

Different options to commute during COVID-19

Britain plans to introduce extra cycle lanes. It will not only eliminate risks of infection but will have the added advantage of being an environmentally friendly option with health benefits.

The government wants people to ride bikes to work. The Transport Secretary said funds had been earmarked for the necessary infrastructure to cater to a new scenario. Incidentally, Sadiq Khan and Andy Burnham, the mayors of London and Manchester respectively, plan to attach "no entry" labels to some roads and convert them to pedestrian and cycle routes.

Sky News makes mention of e-scooters also. This mode of transport is gaining in popularity, but there appears to be some confusion about the law and enforcement of regulations around these vehicles. E-scooters have been a source of confusion as their popularity has increased in recent years.

The Transport Secretary said these are not authorized on British roads, but the government would fast track the issue of approval. Obviously, the authorities want people to return to work. The work from home culture may not be effective for all types of work.

Those who are used to flying would be hard hit because airlines are seeing passenger numbers plummet because of COVID-19.

COVID-19 could see a boom in the use of bicycles

According to ABC News, other countries are also looking at a new scenario in view of COVID-19. They want to get their economies back on track after the devastation released by the coronavirus pandemic. They are encouraging the use of bicycles as a way to avoid unsafe crowding on public transportation like trains and buses. Cycling activists are using the opportunity to get additional bike lanes or widen existing ones.

As Morton Kabell, an official of the European Cyclists' Federation, explains - the transition to more bike-friendly urban environments "is necessary if we want our cities to work." He does not mince his words when he says people have to get back to work someday.

Half of the daily commuters in Copenhagen use the bicycle and Netherlands has a huge network of bike lanes. France is not too far behind. Its lockdown ends May 11 and it plans for additional bicycle lanes. Laura Vergara, head of Spain's ConBici advocacy group, says - "In Australia, bicycle sales have already skyrocketed. Why couldn't that happen here?"

Change in outlook necessary to fight COVID-19

Countries all over the world realize that there is a need to change the outlook on COVID-19. It is admittedly a major threat to modern society, but one has to explore alternate options. People cannot remain confined in their homes for days on end. COVID-19 has seen several districts in India go under lockdown from March 23.

As ABC News says - in Berlin, a local council has gone in for "tactical urbanism." These are low-cost changes that are technically simple and reversible but can make a considerable difference. In many other cities, bike paths have been expanded by acquiring space from cars or current parking sites. Bogota is returning to work this week, and Mayor Claudia López wants the workers to use the cycle.

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