An increasing number of people are riding their bikes to work in downtown San Francisco. This is great news for The City as it creates less traffic and pollution, but there seems to be one underlying problem: there isn’t enough bike parking.
In an effort to fix this issue and encourage more bike commuting Supervisor John Avalos proposed The City require downtown businesses to provide their employees with a “safe, secure place” to store their bikes while at work.
The proposal would require all downtown building owners to allow bikes to be stored inside or provide parking within three blocks of the building. And in case it isn’t clear enough, building owners would also need to turn in a “bicycle access plan” to the Department of the Environment showing where employees can park their bikes.
According to the SFMTA, around 75,000 people ride bikes every day in SF and 3.5 percent of commuters rode bikes in 2010, an increase from 2.1 percent in 2002.
The Board of Supervisors Public Safety Committee will vote on Thursday to decide how they will proceed with the proposed legislation. After its expected approval, it will be sent to the full board for a final vote.
So until this passes, what are your other options?
An increasingly popular solution to the non-existent bike parking around The City has come in the form of a bike corral. Kind of like a horse corral but for your bike. Between 8 and 12 bikes can be locked to an available hitching post at each corral. There are a total of 24 corrals in The City, all installed by SFMTA.
Another option currently available for downtown commuters is the Embarcadero BART bike station. It is a 24-hour self-service bike parking center. Although this doesn’t help you much if you don’t work near this BART station.
And a final option available this July is San Francisco’s very own trendy bike-sharing program.
So before you tie your bike up to a tree, parking meter, or some other object wherein it will likely be stolen, check out your options.