Bike Rack FAIL: Hide and Seek on Castro Street

17 Apr

What good is bike parking if you can’t find it? I’ve visited this small retail plaza in downtown Mountain View for over 15 years. With no bike rack on the sidewalk out front, I’ve always locked up to a sign post or tree. The other day I stopped at the dry cleaners and found a bike rack, hidden behind the azaleas. I don’t think it’s new.

Bike Parking Stair Entrance

If the dry cleaners had an entrance was on Castro Street like the other shops, instead of only an entrance from the back parking lot, I would have never found the inconspicuous rack facing Church Street. Who knew?

Location: Castro Street at Church Street, Mountain View, CA, USA.


Posted by on April 17, 2013 in Bike Lane FAIL


8 responses to “Bike Rack FAIL: Hide and Seek on Castro Street

  1. Rachel Unger

    April 17, 2013 at 4:27 pm

    I had no idea! (I tend to use the little two-bike ones across Castro near the flower shop if I’m in that area.) Good to know.

    • ladyfleur

      April 17, 2013 at 4:33 pm

      Now you know! Whoever designed it made a couple of mistakes beyond what I wrote (1) the bike-friendly way to reach the parking is from the car parking area in the back, an area a bike rider doesn’t naturally go to since there are entrances on Castro Street. (2) even if you go into the back parking lot, you can’t see the bike parking at all.

  2. Peter Donohue

    April 18, 2013 at 8:55 am

    I feel that an out of sight bike rack is more dangerous – would be easier for a thief to have privacy while cutting your lock.

    • ladyfleur

      April 18, 2013 at 9:47 am

      I completely agree. Being hidden makes theft much easier. To me it also says that the planner thinks bikes are ugly and need to be hidden from view, like garbage bins or air conditioners.

  3. I Cycle (@I_Cycle_2)

    April 18, 2013 at 10:48 am

    I’ve spent some extra money on a good bike stand (hebie 605) so I’m not dependent whether or not bike racks are available or useful. To much old style bike racks here which can cause damage to the front wheel. (Not everything is up to speed yet in bicycle country the Netherlands 😉 )

  4. Bill

    April 22, 2013 at 11:46 am

    Hi Everyone,

    While still believe that requiring properly placed bike parking is something to work for, I *have*
    adopted *I Cycle’s* response… kickstand, park close to the entrance (while not obstructing
    walkways, etc.). One idea I have is that the space *next to* the handicapped space should
    be required to be bike-parking. Voo Ha! — Bill

    • ladyfleur

      April 22, 2013 at 11:59 am

      I sometimes lock up near a store entrance without a rack, but not for long since it’s not very secure.


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