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Bicycles in Munich can now catch a ride

Another blow for cyclists' freedom is being struck in West Germany. Munich will soon become the fourth city (after West Berlin, Hamburg, and Stuttgart) to allow bicycle riders to take their vehicles onto the subways and local commuter trains.

The decision follows a two-year struggle, and some bitterness remains. While liberal city councilor Horst Haffner hailed the move as an ''especially successful experience,'' Social Democratic councilor Hans Bojer muttered that now Sunday horseback riders will be tempted to take their steeds onto the city rails, too.

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The cyclists' gain is only partial, any visiting hostelers should be warned. It applies only to holidays and weekends, with the latter defined as after 2 p.m. Saturday through Sunday night. The dispensation will apply only from May 15 to Oct. 17. The cost per vehicle will be three marks (about $1.25). And 12 -year-olds and under without adult companions will not be welcome.

Another complication: The new rules set a limit of two bikes per train platform. Yet the city transport authority, which fought the new decision, has let it be known it is not going to field new personnel to police this limitation.

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