Bicycle parking makes a political statement

IMG_9176Take a second look at this seemingly cute vintage car parked in Darby St. It is actually a bike rack with several bikes tied up in it, and also a number of planter boxes, making the street prettier and providing plenty of secure parking spaces for bikes at the same time. When I took this photo I did not realise that it was making a statement that one car equals ten bikes – in terms of parking spaces at least. This is a movement that is spreading, encouraging those that see it to think about the amount of space a car takes up on the road compared to a bike, and not just necessarily just parking space.

In practical matters, this piece of infrastructure also offers much better bike parking than the usual footpath located bike racks, as it does not take up space on the footpath, but it does protect the bikes from passing cars. And the styling of this one, with its retro cuteness and plantings, adds to the look of the streetscape as well.

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3 Responses to Bicycle parking makes a political statement

  1. anniebikes says:

    I realize it’s a worthwhile statement, but something bothers me about this set up. Sure, it’s a cute car (a Deux Chevaux, perhaps?) but I disagree that it adds aesthetics to the landscape. To my mind the setup still presents the image of one more car on the street — at least to drivers.. I’m wondering if the same premise could be accomplished in a manner that exposes the bikes to drivers and pedestrians, thus emphasizing the riding versus driving impact on parking facilities. We have one rack here in Burlington that works well.
    http://anniebikes.blogspot.com/2010/12/tis-season.html
    (scroll to the end)

  2. Vicki says:

    I can see the point you’re making Annie, and I admit that hadn’t occurred to me. The thing that appeals to me about this particular set up is the unexpected element of it. You see a car where you expect to see it, then realise it’s not actually a car! I guess if the rack was an outline of a car or bus or whatever, it makes the bikes much more visible to cars passing by and that can be a good thing, but what I like about this one is the surprise element, among all the other things.

  3. laurent says:

    IMO: it’s an advertiser picture which show an old fashion (posh ?) grocery, I don’t give a thumbs up because it’s hiding more or less parking bike facilities. I prefer by far efficient sober aesthetic like the “blue bus” bike rack or car-shaped rack.
    If we are thinking of large scale of time, we can dream about a street with less cars caused by lake of energy. Nevertheless, something would be permanent: anti-theft device which is so heavy on a bicycle.
    Does an area without bicycle theft exist in the world? I doubt it.

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