Monday, June 9, 2014

one bike rack is not enough

In recent weeks, it's been more difficult to get bike parking when shopping at County Fair (10800 S. Western).  There were previously 3 2-bike racks, providing space for 6 bikes (and perhaps 1 or 2 more, if folks are creative).  Two of the racks were removed, and I've gotten no complete answer as to why that happened.  I talked to a store employee yesterday, who said that one of the racks and an adjacent light pole had been hit by a car that ran onto the sidewalk. He didn't know why the other rack had been removed.

When I rolled up yesterday, one bike was already locked to the rack. I locked up to the other spot. Two more cyclists rolled up as I was locking up. They ended up leaving their bikes unlocked when they went inside. Another cyclist arrived and did likewise.

Full rack - no more room to lock up

When I came out, the unlocked bikes were gone, replaced by 3 new ones, including one cleverly sandwiched into the middle of the rack. This volume of bike traffic to the store is not unusual.  Some store employees ride to work, so there should be room for them and for customers. With no parking meters or posts available, there is nothing else suitable for secure bike parking unless one wants to go a block or two down the street.

If someone is shopping by bike and concerned about the security of their bike, the lack of secure parking could result in some lost sales for the store. I value County Fair as a quality neighborhood store, so I don't want to see that happen.  My bike is one of my main forms of transportation, so I don't want to leave it unlocked anywhere on Western. This may not be a high bike theft area, but it does happen. I have no desire to see my bike become another theft statistic.

Do you ride your bike to County Fair? If you'd like to send a message that bike racks matter at this location, please submit a bike rack request here.

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