Transportation - Bicycle Parking
Encouraging the use of bicycles in our communities may require re-thinking bike parking locations and conditions. A new bicycle today can represent an investment of hundreds or even thousands of dollars. Serious bicyclers are understandably protective of their bikes and not inclined to leave them in out-of-the-way, unsecured lots.
If bicycles in your town are chained to lamp-posts or street signs, it's probably because your bike parking is insufficient. Bicycle parking facilities should be located in highly visible, well-lighted and secure areas convenient to stores, public transportation hubs and other high traffic areas. Covered parking or parking lockers are becoming popular in cities with large bicyclist populations.
The City of Portland (OR) is way out front on bicycles, and has a whole section of their web site dedicated to issues of bicycle parking.
The International Bicycle Fund is a non-governmental, nonprofit, advocacy organization promoting sustainable transport and international understanding. Their web site has lots of great information about bike racks, bike lockers and other bike parking options.
Not every community needs valet parking for bicycles, but apparently such a service at concerts, festivals and other events can encourage people to bike rather than drive their cars. To find out more, here's an article about the growing trend in San Francisco.