About 25 years behind Europe as usual, but custom cargo bicycles are starting to hit the streets in New York (www.hudsonurbanbicycles.com) and Portland, Oregon (www.metrofiets.com). Hip moms as well as service professionals like carpenters and plumbers have started to use the SUV of bicycles.
US versions are typically significantly more expensive (USD$3000 and up instead of $1500 and up) as they are currently only available in customized versions or imported from Europe. They also tend to be lighter and longer than their continental counterparts.
Here’s a recent NYTimes article and super cute video of some girls who helped design their own pink and silver bicycle in New York: http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/07/17/spokes-hauling-cargo-no-car-necessary/
George Bliss of Hudson Urban Bicycles claims he started building “around the time cargo bikes started gettting popular in Holland, 3-4 years ago”. But even the Dutch are quick to point out that they (www.bakfiets.nl) copied the Danish (www.christianiabikes.dk), who started the trend way back in 1984. Sorry, New York, sometimes you are way behind the times! But it’s nice to see you catching up finally.