The bicycle, long emblematic of transportation in China, is gradually fading in popularity as people opt to take taxis and buses around town and dream of cars of their own. Even as its human population expands beyond 1.3 billion, China is experiencing a decline in its bicycle population, from a high of 545.3 million in 1995 to 540 million today. As Beijing sprawls out, commuting distances are increasing and people are less inclined to pedal themselves to work. On some Beijing streets, bike lanes go almost unused, and cars, buses, and trucks dominate. More and more young Chinese are not even learning to ride bikes.

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