Golden Triangle BID Bike Rack Competition

The Premise: The District of Columbia’s multi-space parking meter initiatives have already resulted in the installation of over 500 such devices throughout the city, including along K Street, within the Golden Triangle BID.  Additional locations will continue to be added, particularly within the central business district.
As multi-space meters are installed, DDOT’s current policy is to remove the older coin-operated meters.  We propose re-purposing the existing 30” high steel meter pole bases as dedicated bicycle racks.  Why just throw away a good pole when it can be re-used?  Every biker knows what to do with a parking meter pole…

Security: Parking meters are designed to resist the most aggressive vandalism one might typically encounter in an urban context.  The existing posts are 3” diameter steel tubes, embedded in concrete at grade.  The added locking point rings will be 1-1/2” diameter heavy gauge steel tubes, welded to the vertical post.A solar-powered lamp will illuminate parked bicycles after dark, providing passive security and advertising to passersby the presence of secure bicycle parking points.

Convenience: Parking meters line most streets in the Golden Triangle BID, particularly busy commercial corridors.  These are exactly the type of streets which would most benefit from the replacement of existing single-space parking meters.  These streets would also benefit from numerous new secure bicycle racks lining the sidewalks.Parking meters are typically installed at intervals designed to fall between parked cars.  This location is ideal for avoiding conflict with car doors and allowing easy mid-block access to the sidewalk.  The added bicycle rack ring may be welded at any angle to the post.  For wide sidewalks, the ring would be installed perpendicular to the street, allowing maximum access to both sides for ease of parking two bikes.  For narrower sidewalks, the rings could be welded at a decreasing angle to the street.  This would still allow constrained access to the street-side parking spot, while not inhibiting pedestrian traffic on the sidewalk.

Symbol: The “P” shape is a universally recognized symbol for parking.  The re-purposing of converted parking meter posts will encourage the public to think about prioritizing bicycle transport over cars.  Bright colors by day and solar-powered illumination by night will catch the attention of passersby, and promote the environmental choice: Biking!

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