Time and time again, cyclists’ needs are simply not considered in our transportation system. From drain grates and uneven manhole covers in the bike lane to bike lanes that just disappear without giving direction to cyclists on how to continue safely, cycling facilities are mostly an afterthought.
The latest example of ignoring cyclists’ needs comes from a location where a well used bike rack has been compromised by the clueless placement of a recycling can. As you can see in the picture, the location of the recycling can makes it difficult to access half of the positions on this bike rack. In addition, at least two positions are now effectively unusable as they are blocked by the can. I would understand a bit if space were constrained and there were no other places where that can could go. However, the south side of the shelter in this picture has a large area that is wide open and could easily accommodate the garbage can as well as the recycling can.
I know what some folks are thinking: “But the bike rack is empty and I bet nobody ever uses it”. A couple of years ago, that may have been the case. It seemed like I was the only person using this particular bike rack. These days, however, things have changed. There is a steady flow of bikes that are locked up at this rack and during the nicer weekdays, it is frequently close to capacity.
Using Metro’s “Bus Shelter Feedback” form, I’ve requested that these cans be moved. I’ll update this entry when/if anything changes. Until then, I guess I’ll just hope not many people bike to the park & ride. That is something I am unaccustomed to hoping for…