Bike Racks

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One of the City of Kelowna’s better programs is the bike rack program.  It is designed to encourage business to install bike racks near their buildings.  In order to make this attractive, the City pays 1/2 of the cost of the rack including installation.  They look after ordering the rack(s) and do a site visit to determine where the racks should be placed.

See here for more information:

www.kelowna.ca/CM/Page1111.aspx

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This program does not cover newer commercial buildings as there is a zoning bylaw that requires “approved” racks at all new buildings (a future post).

Benefits of the City’s program are that racks provided will be placed in favourable positions (very visible and convenient) and it is attractive to business, due to cost sharing.

Over the last 2 years, I was able to encourage the following businesses to install racks under this program:

– Glenpark Mall – 3 racks.

– Glenmore Plaza – 1 rack.

– Home Hardware – 1 rack.

A few considerations for bike racks (business owners please take note).  They should be convenient and very visible.  When the downtown library was built they put the racks around the corner from the main doors, such that they were out of sight of most people entering the building and were not visible if you were in the building.   This was very convenient for bike thieves but not very attractive for bike owners.  It wasn’t very long before the racks were moved to the front, quite close to the main doors.

Bike racks should also support the bike above the center of gravity.  Businesses putting in the “concrete wheel wrecker” style of bike rack are doing bike owner’s no favors.  The city’s bylaw regarding racks does not allow these yet (very likely for cost reasons) businesses still put them in.

If you are aware of a business that has no racks or inadequate racks, bring the City program to their attention.  The City also has brochures regarding the program – pick one up and provide it to businesses needing racks.  Not all buildings (such as Princess Auto) have gas pipe and meters available near the front door.

John.

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