About the Doc

After his Peace Corps stint in Ecuador, where only his landlord had a bicycle, David Schweidenback had the novel idea to send used American bicycles to developing world towns as economic development aid. He created Pedals for Progress in 1991, and started shipping bikes to the Nicaraguan city of Rivas, where, with local help, the program has been proven a success. Xiomara Davila, Joaquin Obando, and Julia Jiron show us daily life in Rivas, and how the simple bicycle has impacted this developing, war-ravaged town.

“Greg Sucharew’s film tells the story of how non-profit Pedals for Progress brought all those bikes… to Rivas… and how they’ve changed the socio-economic outlook for its residents.”Sundance TV

Rivas, Nicaragua

Rivas is located in the south western part of Nicaragua, the poorest country in Central America, and second poorest in the Western Hemisphere. It is a stone’s throw from Lago Nicaragua, Central America’s largest lake. The Pan-American Highway runs through Rivas, bicycle lanes attached. The city has a population of about 50,000 people, while the wider department of Rivas surrounding it has a population of around 170,000.


Check below for screenings of The Bicycle City. If you wish to host a screening contact Greg Sucharew at gregsucharew(a)gmail.com for information.