Free Parking!

Photo: Flickr, Paul Krueger

No matter your cadence, Stanley Park Slow Rider or Hard Core Road Racer, I am confident you will agree that one of the perks of cycling versus driving in Vancouver is access to free parking. You don’t need to search for long to find a strategically located bike rack to park your trusted steed. As the number of cycling commuters and leisure riders increases, the demand for bike infrastructure continues to grow and at the heart of the growth is the demand for increased bicycle parking.

Photo: Flickr, Paul Krueger

As a passionate cyclist, I frequently find myself contrasting and comparing bike racks and bicycle storage options. In truth, cycling infrastructure often defines a city.  Long gone are light poles and standard schoolyard grid racks. Replaced by sleek, modern, creative and functional designs, the quirky models of today are a testament to both the cycling and the arts communities.

Photo: Rob Weiss

In an effort to further inspire and engage Vancouver’s cycling creatives, the City is taking it one step further by hosting an official Bike Rack Design Competition. Contest guidelines are simple; the judging panel is looking for:

  • Designs that are fun, functional and can hold two bikes.
  • Designs that can be fabricated and installed by the City, cost-effectively of course!
  • Designs that reflect Vancouver in a creative and original way. Think Hipsters meet Orcas?

Count me in because truthfully, after a long, gruelling rainy ride doesn’t your bike deserve a state of the art lock up? I know mine does. Of course, when push comes to shove, on those beautiful bright, sunny beach days, you can’t beat a good old-fashioned log!

Photo: Flickr, Colleen Dunbar

Ready to get involved?

New age rack designs must meet the following criteria:

  • Be Lockable
  • Keep Bikes Upright
  • Be Durable
  • Be Kid-Proof
  • Be Caneable
  • Not a tripping hazard
  • Be easy to park

Photo: Bike Racks in Nashville, TN by Adam Fagen

If you live, work or attend school in Vancouver you are eligible to enter.  The winning design will receive $2000.  Competition closes on May 13th, so start spinning your gears! Full contest details available here.

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