Tag Archives: racks

A “better” bike rack through dental technology

I love our dentist, Dr. Russell. He’s the kind of guy I can exchange snippy banter with while he takes better care of my mouth then the words coming out of it often deserve.

As many of you know, Anne and I are turning into bike rack zealots. So its no surprise that during my cleaning last winter, I spent some time berating him for his shoddy bike  parking.  The rack at his office is old, rattly, rusty, and not even secured to the ground!

To his credit, Dr. Russell didn’t jab me with one of those evil dental picks. Instead, he listened respectfully, asked a couple questions, and gave me a little hope he’d do something about it.

Last Thursday I was back for my summer cleaning. Approaching the still-in-place ratty old rack my initial disappointment quickly turned to  admiration for the way he had spiffed it up and secured it with the tools of his trade:

Waxed Floss Rack Security

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The Bike Rack Dance

This bike rack makes us laugh. It’s really old and rusty and it’s not bolted to anything. Very effective!

I only shop at this Safeway when I’m feeling lazy: it’s at the top of the hill so I can cruise down the hill on my grocery-laden bike for a change. 

The other day the five year old did an impromptu dance on the rusty-non-bolted rack. He was really loving the music he created. The fake burp at the end of the video is the best – you gotta love five-year-old boys.

 – Anne

Bike Rack Advocacy: A Message For Seattle Schools

Full Racks in PortlandJust last week, we wrote about the lack of safe bike parking at Seattle’s newly-remodeled Garfield high school. I meant to send the school district an email then but procrastination got the best of me. This evening, Cascade’s Braking News highlighted the problem in it’s Advocacy Issues section; I couldn’t let the opportunity to speak my mind pass again. Continue reading

Update on Mayor Nichols’ racks

SDOT text on zoka rack

I recently requested some bike racks for a fairly new commercial strip in the Ravenna neighborhood of Seattle. Over the past several years some “mixed use” apartment buildings have been built on NE 65th street. In addition to the two large apartment buildings, there are now four restaurants on the two-block stretch. And not a single bike rack. Continue reading

Seattle Bike Swap: Big Crowds and Lame Bike Parking

Impromptu bike parking at the Seattle Bike SwapI rode down to the Seattle Bike Swap on Saturday morning. It’s not like I need anything but I can’t resist the thought of a deal. Other than a nice Wald basket ($7) and a couple of cowbells, (3 for $5) I otherwise kept ahold of my cash and didn’t add to the garage gear piles.

The big news was the massive crowd and resulting bike rack shortage. I’ve attended the last few years, and though the event is popular, I can usually stroll in a few minutes after 9. This year, however I rolled up to a line snaking around the hanger. The bike scene is alive and well in Seattle. Though far too many attendees chose to drive this year, a sizable number of riders quickly overwhelmed the existing racks.

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Now *That’s* a Rack

Airgo Rack at Cycleliciousness, the Copenhagen Bike Culture Blog

The Northern European-style lovefest continues here at Car Free Days. This time we’re ga-ga over a lowly bike rack blogged by Cycleliciousness, those Copenhagen Bike Culture bellwethers.

I’ve posted before on our shortage of good racks, and about the Seattle Department of Transportation’s rack request program. And while the program is admirable in scope, the aesthetics (and in some cases, security) of the designs leave something to be desired.

But this 2006 Dutch design winner (either known as the Airago or the Heklucht– feel free to correct me) squashes those issues by bridging urban art, emergency functionality for passing commuters and safe locking space for neighborhood velos.

heklucht at Flickr

I’m sure someone else can point out how the racks are cost-prohibitive (though if we are looking at cost per use, then our beloved cars, ferries, SLUT and the Sounder train would be off the table) or how they’ll require much maintenance in our rainy climes; or even how they’d be a liability issue because someone might stick the hose somewhere it doesn’t belong.

But this time I am not the cynic. I love it!

Since we can’t seem to solve all (any?) of our bike infrastructure problems with any speed, I’d be up for some token public spending on some only moderately practical, but very nice looking bike racks. Personally, I think they’d look mighty swell as the official rack for Paul Allen’s South Lake Union pet project (and as an added bonus: I could use them on my daily commute).

So, how about it Mr. Mayor?

-Tim

Election Night Special Edition: Seattle Mayor DOES Want to Show Off His Rack

zoka SDOT rack

…at least the new one at University Zoka, spotted this morning by an eagle-eyed, pre-caffeine, carfree-Anne.

If you recall, I posted a while ago about the Seattle Bike rack program. One of my nominated locations was UZ. Low and behold, today we see a single, shiny new rack. Either someone SDOT reads this blog (unlikely), or I just got lucky.

Like any red-blooded, American urban cyclist, I ultimately lust after a nice pair (at least). The demand is there — at 11am. this rack was full, a Zoka-installed rack was full, and bikes were chained to the street trees. Still, I’m a sucker for almost any rack and can’t help but give a frat-boy-sized W00t! to this lopsided offering,

Dare I hope this is a sign of life to come in a post-Bicycle Master Plan world? Nah, I’m not that optimistic. Still, I won’t mind a bit if SDOT proves me wrong.

SDOT text on zoka rack

-Tim

Seattle Mayor Nichols Wants to Show You His Rack(s)

Circle Bike Rack from SDOT SDOT Photo

As we ride more (and more and more) around our fair city, I’m struck by how little the city does to accommodate the parking of our two-wheeled steeds. Racks are few and far between, but cars are welcomed on nearly every curb. It used to be, back in the day, this didn’t matter much because you could count on a nearby, sturdy, parking meter…

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