Bike Storage is the New Hot Commodity

With bike riding and commuting soaring in NYC, the question of where to store bikes - at home, is becoming more important. Bike storage is now a hot amenity in many Brooklyn and Manhattan apartments - so much that monthly fees may apply.

Last year "the city passed a law last year requiring new residential buildings with more than 10 units to have one bike space per two apartments", but that still leaves unmet demand by many prospective tenants, to say nothing of the existing shortfall which is being met in some cases by retrofitting storage spaces.

"Suddenly, bike storage has become a make-or-break amenity for apartment buyers and renters alike. Scores of buildings across bike-friendly Brooklyn and even congested Manhattan are responding to the burgeoning demand, adding more parking space for two-wheelers.

To keep some control over the newly popular perk, some developers have even begun charging fees as high as $10 per bike a month." However, the fees can also deter residents from filling scarce capacity with unused or extra bicycles.

Full Story: The latest must-have: bike space City's crush of cyclists turns parking into hot apartment amenity.



Bike storage issues

So New York is asking developers to provide one stall per two units. That seems quite low for NY. I would have thought it would be higher. In Vancouver BC (and many of the outlying municipalities) it is already 1:1. This not necessarily saying they're filled, but it is anticipating the future. One neat way I have found some architects are responding to this is to increase the size of the storage lockers so they can accommodate bikes in there. This makes the space more flexible and can be used for extra storage if not currently being used for a bike.

For existing buildings, converting car parking stalls is the easiest way to increase capacity. You should be able to get 10+ bikes in one car stall.

I do not think charging for bike parking is a good idea. We are still very much in a period where we're trying to influence bahaviour and encourage people to try alternative forms of transport. Charging for bike storage is not going to help this. Charging for car parking is.

Tim Barton

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