Good bike parking basics
What makes good bike parking?
The right design, location, position and installation ensure great bike parking.
Done well good bike parking will attract bike-users to your business and show your support for biking.
Remember if you are going to invest in bike parking, do it once and do it right. Otherwise you might be disappointed when it is not used or complained about…. and don’t buy a ‘wheel-bender’.
A good bike rack supports the bike frame at two points.
Without support for the frame of the bike, all the bike’s weight rests on the wheel. This can cause damage to the spokes and rim and result in buckling to the wheel. If the bike has disc brakes, they can become dented or bent causing the brakes to malfunction.
Secure locking deters thieves
To lock your bike securely, you need to pass the lock through an immoveable object (the bike rack) and a non-removable part of your bike (the frame). See Lock it or Lose it
Bike parking needs enough space around it so that it can be correctly used. Common mistakes include:
- Racks too close to each other
- Racks to close to a wall, parking spot or throughfare
- Bikes are too close to moving vehicles or loading and unloading zones.
Bike parking should be located as close to your front entrance as possible. Ideally as close as the nearest parking spot. Bike users love convenience, that is why they choose to bike!
Places to avoid:
- The depths of your carpark, especially underground.
- Poorly lit and infrequently used areas.
- Out of the way and out of sight spots.
Remember it needs to be visible to be used and to be safe.
Learn what makes good bike parking:
Supports the frame
Bike parking that only supports the wheel of a bike is called a ‘wheelbender’ for good reason.
What to look for:
- The frame of the bike is supported, not just the wheel
- The bike is well supported in more than one point of contact. This means it won’t ‘dance’ around, and won’t easily fall if knocked.
Is secure and enables secure locking
As biking increases so does bike-theft. Some bike locks are easy to cut and opportunistic thieves will also steal parts and accessories from bikes.
Secure bike parking:
- Is securely attached to an immovable object.
- Enables locking of both frame and wheel with a rigid ‘D-lock’.
- It is an area with passive or active surveillance.
- Is well lit.
Is convenient and accessible
Bike parking should be located where bike users can easily find and use it.
Convenient bike parking:
- Is located close to the main entrance, preferably at least as close as the nearest car-parking spot.
- Provides enough space between bikes so bikes can be locked, loaded and manoeuvred safely.
Is safe for all users and bikes
Ensure your bike parking will not cause injury or obstruction for pedestrians, staff, bike users or their bikes.
Safe bike parking:
- Is located adjacent to main throughfares, but not in them.
- Allows for sight-impaired users to safely avoid them.
- Edges are smooth and rounded so as not to damage people or bikes.
- Does not obstruct access for your customers or staff, including those with mobility needs.
- Considers the needs of disabled bike-users.
Looks and works like bike parking
There are some great artistic and decorative options for bike parking.
- Functionality and safety are essential.
- It needs to look like bike parking – else it will not be used for fear of mistaking your art piece for bike-parking.