Bike Parking at City Utilities
We’ve got a co-op/intern working part time down in the Mapping Department who rides his bike to work. He has a pretty nice mountain bike that he must ride a pretty short distance to work because he never needs a shower (or so, I presume…he’s never in the locker room). For some reason, he takes his bike up to his cubicle on the second floor. Apparently, his taking the bike upstairs has raised a few eyebrows among management.
Anyway, the facilities guy was basically asking me where I parked my bike and what someone would be looking for in a designated bike area.
I’ve mentioned before that CU has an enclosed courtyard at the back of our Training Center, and a locker room with showers just inside the door you can see over the top of my bike in the picture above. There is a wave style bike rack out there. The security guard is really good about unlocking the gate to the courtyard for me every morning before I get there, and after I park my bike, I just pull the gate shut so it locks behind me when I go around to the open entrance to the building. Because the bike’s locked in, I don’t even bother locking to the bike rack, opting instead to just lean it against the wall to the left of where you see it above.
My response to the query was that our courtyard was a really awesome place to park my bike because I felt it was both secure and out of sight. The only thing it lacks in my mind is protection from the weather. There are a couple of overhangs that you can tuck your bike into when it’s wet, but both of those have a door that opens outward from stairwells coming down. I’ve never seen anyone use those doors, but the first time I thought I would be smart and use one of the overhangs to protect my bike from the weather, I’ll be darned but somebody came out and of course knocked my bike over. That taught me real quickly that using the overhangs isn’t an option, so when the weather is inclement, I usually take the bike inside and put it into the vestibule room that feeds the men’s and women’s locker rooms. It used to have treadmills and a couple of other pieces of exercise equipment in it, and is basically an empty room now. I mentioned to him that an ideal situation would be to put a couple of bike lockers out in the corner of the courtyard. He knows what they are because CU actually has some at our bus turnaround facility, and kind of nodded with me that in the scheme of things they weren’t that expensive ($1,000-$4,000 for two bikes).
He kind of alluded that he was thinking of installing a new bike rack out under the overhang in front of the building. I pointed out that doing so would address my weather concern, but that I would probably continue using the courtyard because even when chained to a rack, there is stuff on my bike that is easily removed (lights and computer) that could be taken in a flash. I like the idea that my bike is safely out of sight behind a locked gate.
As we concluded the conversation, I wondered if anything would really come of it. After all, when you think about it, we’ve got a perfectly acceptable situation (at least in my mind) that the guy would probably be content to use if somebody asked him to. Since he’s just a co-op, he may not even know the courtyard exists!
Maybe I should go introduce myself to him someday….it would probably be the right thing to do.
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