63 Comment

  • I have nothing against bikes, but the Bike Rack has taken car parking spots from an area that is very hard to find already. This side of the street is the lesser zoned one and something used by everyone from people going to dinner or people working at those very restaurants. I don’t see such a demand for bike parking in this area as most people with bikes out front are going inside for service.

    • If car parking is already hard to find, then taking away one spot is not, all of a sudden, going to make parking very easy to find.

    • I live in the area, have a car, and feel burdened by the parking situation as well, but I support this wholeheartedly. Biking is a viable mode of transit and we need infrastructure like this to support it. People should use alternative modes of transit like biking to travel into urban core, even if that is less convenient for them. One strategy to encourage this is to make biking and metroing and the like more attractive and available. Taking away a couple spots on the street isn’t going to change anybody’s life, so bully Chuck et al. from TBR!

      • This isn’t making biking more available. There is a bikeshare around the corner for starters, and even if there wasn’t, I have yet to encounter anyone who avoids biking because of a lack of bike parking. I have no issue with more bike parking being put up around town, but I do have an issue with one business being favored over another in a highly transited area like 14th.

        • I think there’s a dearth of secure bike parking in the area and so I disagree. Secondly, the issue with parking in the area is driven by scarcity, and is I think driven by two factors. 1) It’s pretty cheap and easy to get an RPP as a resident, so more people have cars than there are available spaces. 2) People who come to eat, drink, conduct business and/or worship in the neighborhood park on the street instead of using another mode of transit. Making street parking a little less available and bike parking a little more available is all to the good, in my book. This isn’t going to change either of those underlying causes of parking scarcity, but I think it may make biking a little bit easier for those who are so inclined (and may have considered driving otherwise).

        • They’re a bike shop. Their customers are bikers. If a business had one reserved spot on this street, people wouldn’t think that’s crazy. Since their customers mostly come by bike, this isn’t crazy.

        • having biked to numerous restaurants in the area, I can attest to the lack of bike parking in that area, particularly on that corner. I got a pretty major scowl from one of the valets at Le Dip when I locked up to a sign by their stand. More places to park our bikes is definitely needed here and in the downtown area.

    • Do people drive to high-density areas such as 14th Street with the expectation that they’ll find free street parking or that they are entitled to it?

      • You forgot people with cars actually live on this block. Aren’t they at least entitled to park near their home? Even if this was a metered area the issue would be the same: less parking in favor of bikes for the benefit of a business. If the spots were elsewhere, maybe I’d feel better about them, but right outside of the Bike Rack. No other business gets dedicated free parking right out their door…why should the Bike Rack?

        • Entitled to park near their home? Not really, in all honesty. The real price of parking should be reflected in either the cost (best) or difficulty (not as good) of finding a free space.

          Want to be guaranteed a spot? Great, just pay for an underground/garage parking space, it is Logan Circle after all.

        • No, you did. And now you have changed the subject. As for the people who live on this block and wish to use public parking spaces for their property, I’ve faced this same problem. It can be a hassle, but I never considered street parking an inalienable right, especially living in a high-density area. Finally, I don’t see this as parking dedicated to Bike Rack customers. As others have pointed out, this business does not have the capacity to serve so many customers. As the headline reads, it is public parking, presumably for the many 14th Street visitors who need a place to park their bikes.

        • It’s not “dedicated” Bike Rack parking because anyone can use the racks, not just Bike Rack customers.

        • Why ever would you assume “parking near home” is an entitlement?

        • It’s a public space, and people with bikes need a place to park too. Just because it used to be a spot for cars to park doesn’t mean that TBR doesn’t have the right to petition the DC government for an alternative use to that space. They did, and DDOT agreed that this was a suitable use for the space. If you don’t think that cyclists going to other businesses in that area aren’t going to use those spaces, you are dead wrong. Anyway, happy trolling!

      • I drive to Logan circle often. I can rarely find convenient or quickly available parking. Free or not. Is there a public paid lot that I am missing??

    • The shop might not, but as someone who also bikes daily (not just to commute but to socialize and run errands as well), I can tell you that the neighborhood as a whole desperately needs more bike parking.

      • For what? Residences? Businesses? why not just put more actual bike racks on the sidewalks like most cities?

        • Because then walking on the sidewalk becomes difficult. Tons of walkers in that hood

        • Have you walked on the sidewalk on 14th on a busy night?
          I live in this area, and primarily bike. Bike parking is scarce. I’ve also been toying with getting rid of my car for the last year and a half. Stuff like this helps make it a more viable alternative. And, seriously, we’re talking about like two parking spots.

    • It is quite difficult to find bicycle parking in that area. Especially if you don’t want to lock your bicycle to a young tree (deadly for trees) or lay it down in the sidewalk to lock it to a 8 inch tall tree box fence (thereby blocking the sidewalk for pedestrians and possibly opening up your bicycle to damage).

      If you don’t ride a bike it might be hard to believe, but I routinely park my bike 2-3 blocks from my destination after a significant amount of searching. There are some blocks that don’t even have a parking sign available.

      And to the commenter about bikeshare–bikeshare is not a substitute for bicycle parking just like a zipcar space is not usable for a personal vehicle. Bikeshare only makes sense as a mode of transportation if you don’t routinely bike, or if you lack space in your dwelling to store a bicycle. I’m thrilled that we have it, but it’s not going to replace the need for spots to lock privately owned bikes.

      • I agree with everything you said minus bike share. Bike share makes plenty of sense for someone that usually uses their own bike. Sometimes you need a one way option if for instance you’re meeting friends for drinks, meeting up with friends and then using another mode of transportation, going to work via other mode of transport and then having a craving to bike etc. I am an everyday bike rider but also have a bike share membership and love it. Also helpful when you can convince your friends to ride with you.

        • Except if you regularly bike, you have your bike with you already. Sure, as a regular biker, I also have a bikeshare membership. But the point stands about bikeshare not being a substitute for bike parking.

  • I count 8 “U”s, how is that about 20?

    • Typically there are at least 2 bikes per U usually I’ve seen more. 16 is pretty close to 20 on the low end.

      • There are two “U”s on the sidewalk too.

        • And 4 more on the sidewalk directly across the street. Bike parking spaces are fine with me . . . but it’s odd this block of Q Street is so extraordinarily blessed with them.

  • Can someone explain how they got this legally done? I used to live on Church and god forbid you had a visitor come in, for parking. I firmly believe bikes are good, but parking is SO damn hard here already and this is at a minimum another space lost.

    • It is also at a maximum one space lost to cars.

    • one, MAYBE two parking spots lost, but almost 16 bike parking spots gained! can’t anyone do math around here? that is a net gain of FOURTEEN spots!! while people are bemoaning their loss of free, publicly subsidized parking, they overlook the fact that this is a great way to maximise the use of space in a dense, urban environment.
      most cars i see are single occupancy — even if two parking spots were given up for this bike corral and they were at maximum capacity (say, four passengers), that would be a max of eight people who could come into this area to shop, spend money, and support the local business . that means there is still a net gain of eight spots! and cyclists to go shopping at places other than bike stores. the other businesses on the block can benefit from the increase in traffic. i don’t see how this only benefits The Bike Rack. that’s like saying that whoever parked in that spot ONLY shopped there as well, which we all know is absurd.

      • “while people are bemoaning their loss of free, publicly subsidized parking”
        I find this funny, because the parking is still free subsidized parking – just for a different group to use. Some (or at least 1 person) is bemoaning the loss of free, publicly subsidized car parking whilst at least 6 others are happy for the gain in free, publicly subsidized bike parking.
        I don’t care either way, I just want to know how this was approved as I can’t find out online how you would go about requesting this, nor what the process is.

        • ok, so i could have been more clear, but my point is still valid that up to 10 cyclists can take the place of one car, which is good for urban desnity and good for business.
          regardless, i’m not sure if this was part of downtown BID’s larger effort, but you can read more about the process of installing bike racks and corrals here:

          “This spring, in an effort to further reduce sidewalk crowding in areas with high bike parking demand, the DowntownDC BID plans to work with DDOT to install several in-street bicycle parking corrals. Each corral uses an area equivalent to one vehicle parking space to provide parking for up to 10 bicycles. There are currently five in-street corrals in DowntownDC”
          most are done in conjunction with DDOT, local businesses, and the larger BID because most business realize that bringing more people into the area is generally good for business, and replacing one driver with 10 cyclists means you have the opportunity for more sales.

          • Thanks! I’ve honestly been searching on and off since this came up trying to find out how this was done – much appreciated on the info.
            and yeah – I got your point I was just amused.

        • true, but i pay property and income tax like other residents and I never park my nonexistent car in public space. So, while a car owner takes up public space to park his/her car, I will gladly take 1/10 of the space of car of public space to park my bike. I’m still using less than a driver.

    • Well, if this were a car space, then someone parking there would also be another space lost. But if you were the guy who found the space, then from your perspective it’s not a space lost. Now to answer your question, AFAIK they got this legally done through a cooperative program between DDOT and WABA to provide more on-street bike parking. There’s no rule or law that requires DDOT to reserve any and all street space for car parking.

  • I don’t think they could have made it uglier if they tried.

  • I’d be really interested in how they got this installed. As this is public space, there has to be a formal process they had to go through, right? Nothing I can find online discusses bicycle parking in street spaces.

    But WABA has (a smaller) one in front of it’s HQ in Adams Morgan, and there is the one on 11th by Meridian Pint… how are these approved?

    • I too would like to know how to get these approved. I think one in front of Vida on U St is desperately needed.

      • I think a permanent one on 18th Street would be a huge bonus as well, whether it be up top by The Diner, or on Kalorama St. nearer the bottom of the hill. The newly widended sidewalks have become a hotbed mess of bikes parked every which way, which has negated a lot of the extension of the sidewalks (including how every place on 18th is now putting up a permanent outdoor patio).

      • Agreed. I go there for Stetson’s, not Vida, but there is a dearth of bike parking on that block.

      • One by the Y on W St. They just added some racks by the door, but most the year (not January lol) every inch of planter has a bike locked to it.

    • There’s a good article from the Citypaper from Oct 3 about this very space that outlines how they come about.

      If it is too long to read, the synopsis is either DDOT, a business or a BID initiates the process. From then on its all DDOT I believe. It’s technically the streets are under DDOT’s jurisdiction, so what they say goes, not the businesses or the residences.

  • This is the stupidest placement ever! I mean, if my bike doesn’t work, I may need to drive it over!

    And, if it does work, why would I need to park it in front of a bike shop? This would make sense in front of an office building or a gym or metro station, but the last place that needs all that bike rack capacity is a bike shop itself!

    • It’s public parking. You can park your bike there and have dinner across the street at Le Dip, if you’d like. Or any of the other zillion restaurants nearby with no bike parking.

    • There are many reasons to go into a bike shop even if your bike is working. And if your bike is working, you do not bring it in with you to shop in the bike shop.

  • This is great! Would love to see more car parking spaces around the city converted to hold up to 20 bikes. The racks at DCUSA, for example, are overflowing with bikes year-round. Every bike shop, transit station, museum, library, school and retail strip should have plenty of bike parking by default. For those whop bemoan the loss of one parking space for a car, well, boo hoo. You’ll have to walk a little farther.

  • Residents who are upset with the parking situation around 14th St should focus on increasing the parking tickets, rather than bemoaning the loss of one spot to bike parking. I used to live in the area, and would constantly hear jerks (aka people who got parking spots closer to my home than me) returning to their cars from a restaurant/bar, and exclaiming that they got a parking ticket for $30–“that’s just about what it would have cost to pay for parking, bro!” Fix that and you’ll have more parking for residents.

  • Absolutely love this. Wish Georgetown would install parking like this as well. The dearth of adequate bike parking is real and I’m glad to see this placed next to 14th Street where it’s desperately needed.

  • The bike lane in front of TBR is, ironically, almost impossible to access when leaving the store. Parking in front of the store is very dense and I usually have to bike to the end of the block, dismount, turn around, and walk my bike ~100 yards from the corner to the store. By having these dedicated posts on the street, it makes it easier to actually ride in the bike lane and dismount/lock your bike in front of the store. A+ Bike Rack.

  • Since this new parking space can serve up to 20 DC citizens instead of only 1 or 2 DC citizens in a car, it seems like a win for the residents of this city.

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