Increased bike parking has always been one of the goals of Bike Friendly Richardson. More bike parking provides incentive for folks to ride their bikes to local destinations, like parks, libraries and local businesses. We have a great city to ride, and now it’s time to work harder on our destinations.
Recently, we were asked by City Council member, Scott Dunn, to present information about creating a functional and comprehensive bike parking plan that would benefit, not only cyclists, but local business owners as well as the city. Bike Friendly Richardson‘s new Bike Parking Initiative’s lead, Mark Adams, was able to present a brief introduction to a bigger plan that will, hopefully, pave the way to a system of well designed and well placed bike racks that will encourage more cycling around town.
Along with some shared input from other local cyclists, Mark has done some extensive research into the world of reliable, sensible and secure bike parking, and we will be sharing that information with city council, staff and developers. We hope to follow in the footsteps of other great cities and incorporate a bike parking component into future building ordinances. We would also love to have the City as a supporter in our crusade to ask existing local businesses to consider investing in bike parking as well.
There are two big bike events happening on Monday, June 2. Please try to attend either one, or both.
The first is the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony of the new Central Trail extension in Richardson. It’s a much needed extension of an existing trail, providing some great connections between our local DART rail train stations and neighborhoods. The City of Richardson and Dallas County are hosting a ribbon cutting ceremony to officially open the trail on June 2.
Here are the details:
Date: Monday, June 2. 2014
Time: 4:00 p.m.
Location: Spring Valley DART Station/Central Trail – Spring Valley Road at Lingco Drive
The next is the Bike Friendly Richardson, Bike Parking Initiative presentation to the Richardson City Council, that evening.
We were asked by City Council member, Scott Dunn, to present information about creating a functional and comprehensive bike parking plan that would benefit, not only cyclists, but local business owners as well as the city. Our new Bike Parking Initiative’s lead, Mark Adams, will present a brief introduction to a bigger plan that will, hopefully, pave the way to a system of well designed and well placed bike racks that will encourage more cycling around town.
Date: Monday, June 2. 2014
Time: 6:00 p.m. – During the City Council Work Session
Location: Richardson City Hall – 411 W Arapaho Rd, Richardson, TX 75083
WE NEED TO SHOW OUR SUPPORT FOR THESE EVENTS! Let’s try to get as many cyclists as possible to the ceremony and council meeting, and show our appreciation and support.
Because of some of the success cyclists are getting with local businesses to get bike parking, we are getting some attention from the Richardson City Council. Currently, we are working on a proposal to promote more bike parking throughout Richardson and we would love to get your input.
If you are free this Friday evening, please stop by and let us know what you think about bike parking around town, where you think we need it, where businesses would benefit and how the city can help facilitate this.
Date: Friday, May 30
Time: 6:00 pm
Location: Freebirds – 238 W Campbell Rd, Richardson, TX 75080
We hope to see you there.
The highly anticipated Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Richardson is finally open for business. Not only has this become one of the hottest destinations in town, it also has an amazing lineup of bike racks that are in the shape of film reels.
Speaking of cool bike parking, the new Whole Foods in Addison has some very impressive bike racks that are in the shape of bicycles. It almost makes up for them leaving Richardson.
I’m glad that both of these businesses care enough about cyclists, and got really creative with their bike parking. This shows that there are some forward-thinking business owners that care about supporting alternate transportation, the local bike culture and a strong community.
I hope that bike parking, like this, continues to be an ongoing trend with new construction around town.
Unfortunately, because of scheduling conflicts, Bike Friendly Richardson won’t be hosting a “Cruise To The Cottonwood” ride this spring. That doesn’t mean you can’t ride there. In fact, we think bicycling the best way to get to the festival – especially on such a beautiful weekend.
Also, thanks to the folks at the City of Richardson, we were told that there will be plenty of bike parking at the entrance, close to Belt Line. While we’re on the topic of bike parking, there will also be parking set up at the Wildflower Festival in a couple of weeks.
So, we’ve got the great biking infrastructure in the works. Bike trails, bike lanes and bike signs are being set up all over town to encourage bike riding. But what about bike PARKING. Where are folks going lock their bikes once they reach their destinations? I’ve seen a few racks around town and I’ve managed to find some random sign poles or fences to lock my bike, but as ridership increases, parking is going to be a real problem.
We would definitely like to see more racks around our city facilities. There are a few racks at places like city hall, most schools and the public library. But other places we visit, including our post offices, playgrounds and parks don’t have them.
One of our goals this year is to map out bike rack locations around town and to encourage riders to politely request bike racks at their favorite destinations. We might even post a little flyer that you can print and hand out to business owners.
We really enjoy going to the Cottonwood Art Festival. It’s probably one of the best artisan events in the Metroplex and it happens in one of our own neighborhood parks. Our only complaint about the festival is the insane automobile traffic and limited car parking during the event. There is no reason an event like this couldn’t have bicycle parking available to help ease some of those issues. Personally, I can’t think of a better way to attend a local, outdoor event, than to arrive on my bike. Reader and bike enthusiast, Brad M. also sent in the suggestion for a bike rack last year.
Well, it looks like event coordinators feel the same way. This year, at the front of the festival, there was a bike rack that was in full use. It was the only one, but it’s a great step in the right direction.
If you feel that bike parking is a good idea at this event, please contact the event coordinators and let them know. While you’re at it, tell them you would like more.
One of the biggest problems with biking around town is the lack of bike parking. We had discussed the need for visible bike parking at local events, but there’s also need for more parking at many of the city’s rider destinations.
Looking at the current state of bike usage around town, one might think there isn’t much need for bike racks. They might not appear to be a justifiable expense for the city and most real estate developers.
We would like people to view it from a different perspective.
Sure, there’s the initial expense of putting up these racks. Sure, these racks may start off mostly unoccupied. However, if you build them in highly visible places and you inspire more people to ride, they will get filled.
A great example of local, proactive, bike friendly efforts is the new Blue Cross Blue Shield campus in Richardson. BFR friend, Dave Carter, had mentioned to us that they offered plenty of bike parking that was within walking distance of Galatyn Park. We took a ride to check it out and found 20 full sized racks on the south side of their parking garage. There is obviously no immediate need for so much bike parking, but they took the initiative and built them to help inspire and grow the bike community.
Our only criticism is that they are a little hard to find. It’s hard to inspire folks to ride their bikes when the racks are tucked away and out of site. Perhaps some nice Bike Parking signage would help.
EDIT: Post was updated to clarify our perspective. See comments below.
A few months ago, We opened up the BFR Suggestion Box. This is a place where the Richardson bike community can voice their opinions and suggestions about things they would like to happen in Richardson for cycling.
Fellow bike and community enthusiast, Brad M., forwarded to us a great email that he wrote to event organizers about his experience at the Cottonwood Art Festival. We thought it would be great to share it on the site:
We need Bicycle Parking… We have found it very difficult to find a space to lock the bikes up. Even in front of the pool there is not a bike rack that can be easily found. We end up locking to the chain link fence or a parking sign near the tennis courts every year.
My suggestion comes from an experience I have had attending the Austin City Limits Music Fest in Austin several times. They have a dedicated area near each entrance for bicycle parking. This is at a much larger scale, however could be incorporated into a smaller scale for Cottonwood (and Wildflower). This not only gives a safe, organized, and controlled area for bikes, but it also encourages bicycle use as other patrons walk by on the way in. A great place for a few temporary bike racks at Cottonwood would be just to the east or west of the park road where the police help cross at Beltline. There is plenty of room on the grass in between the last row of tents and the sidewalk along Belt Line. I believe this area should be well signed and promoted in the the festival literature to promote a sustainable way of travel to the fest as well as cut down on the neighborhood traffic. As people pass by in the traffic on Beltline they might be encouraged to go home and ride their bike back.
We think this is a great idea. We’ve always envisioned offering up some sort of bike valet service (like the SF Bike Coalition), but this solution is a much more obtainable goal.
Dave Carter with the City Of Richardson has mentioned to us that, for previous Wildflower events, they’ve pulled the city’s available racks and relocated them for event usage. He’s also mentioned to us via email: For the Wildflower Festival there are plenty of bicycle racks for parking bikes at the BCBS garage on the north side of Lookout Drive. Easy bike access from the Central Trail, Glenville Road and Routh Creek Parkway.
We hope to see more bike parking at more city events. Like Brad, we think having the racks available and fully visible will encourage more folks to ride their bikes to local events.