Bike lanes are the holy grail of cycling infrastructure, but what’s equally important for getting people to travel by bike is the availability of parking facilities.
We’ve all been in the position of locking our bikes awkwardly against a lamppost or railing simply because there’s no better alternative. In the modern town or city, there’s no excuse for this to be the case. People need to know their bike is securely parked while they go to work or about their daily business.
We know as well that if this infrastructure is in place, it will be used. In fact, 38% of office workers surveyed said they would consider cycling to work if their office provided better facilities.
1. Bike repair stations
Bike repair stations and bike pumps include all the common tools you’d need to fix a puncture, a wobbly seat post, or even tuning your gears.
Being stranded at work (or anywhere for that matter) with a flat tyre isn’t fun, and offering repair stations will keep cyclists moving and provide peace of mind – knowing you can fix any roadside issues quickly and easily.
Stations and pumps can be found publicly too. Whether it’s near supermarkets or on high streets, some councils in Ireland have been installing these facilities to better look after cyclists. The reality is for employers that installing these facilities is very cheap, and the return on investment is extremely high. Your employees will be happier and healthier.
2. Secure parking
For any cyclists locking or storing a bike, security is likely to be the primary concern.
The best, most efficient way that workplaces and residential buildings can achieve this is through private access. That either requires an internal cycle storeroom, or an external gated secure shelter.
External gated shelters, whether in car parks or outside offices, have the option to add keypad or keycode access. Cycle hubs and shelters like these also give a visual statement that cycling is a priority for the building. That can inspire confidence for new cyclists and suggests the organisation welcomes cyclists with open arms.
For public facilities, such as outside libraries, supermarkets, and on street parking, CCTV and lighting will improve upon existing parking.
In the future, we may see more disused shops being transformed into cycle parking stores. It’s easier to keep these areas well lit, and with security guards and CCTV already in place, it’s a productive use of space to encourage active travel.
3. Way-finding and lighting
Arriving in a dark basement or heading round to the bins behind your building at work is off-putting to say the least.
Sometimes, it is unavoidable that cycle parking needs to be located in these areas, but good lighting and visible wayfinding signs will lead to a much more pleasant experience.
For indoor stores this could be brightly coloured arrows, or helpful graphics. If it’s outside, keep the area well-lit 24/7, and make sure signs to the facilities are obvious.
4. Lockers and showers
If you’ve just arrived at the office from a long commute, you may be hot and
sweaty or cold and wet. What you’d like is a hot shower and a change of clothes.
Adding showers to workplace cycling facilities will not only look after cyclists,
but are ideal for lunchtime gym sessions or runners too. If adding showers
isn’t possible, you can think about granting access to local gym facilities
Kit lockers mean you can store your cycling equipment next to your bike, giving you a good place to store valuables too. Dedicated folding bike lockers are also ideal for those with Brompton style bikes. The beauty of this facility is that it caters for a whole load of employee needs, not just those needs of employees on two wheels.
E-bikes are no longer a thing of the future; the future is here. Every week there are noticeable increases in the amount of E-bikes zooming around places like Dublin, Galway and Cork. To keep this trend on the rise, there are a few changes that need to be made to cycle parking facilities. Including charging stations is the obvious answer. They’ll mean you can charge your bike while you shop, work or live, without having to remove your battery or carry your heavy e-bike up flights of stairs.
This article has been adapted from an original written by Turvec Solutions.