The Good Life and Market Collective: Let’s have more bike parking!

As most of you already know, Good Life Bikes shares the Anthill Building with Market Collective. There is much controversy surrounding the cancellation of 2 out 3 weekends in December that Market Collective was hoping to have the Anthill Building. Here are some newspaper articles for more information:

Calgary Herald Article

FFWD Article

We wanted to stress to everyone that Good Life Bikes had no involvement in this decision by the Kensington Business Revitalization Zone (BRZ), as this sort of decision is not under our jurisdiction. Everyone at Good Life Bikes loves Market Collective and wants to work with everyone and anyone to make Kensington and the rest of Calgary to become a more vibrant place filled with art, music, small businesses and of course bikes. According to the Fast Forward article, this controversy stems in part from the concern regarding the lack of parking. Quoting Suzy Thompson: “the BRZ believes the market puts too much pressure on local parking as it brings in 3,000 to 5,000 people over the weekends it operates, and that’s why Market Collective isn’t welcome.”

In view of this comment, our suggestion is that the City and the Kensington BRZ should install more bike parking. Some advantages include

  1. bikes takes up less space. In Montreal, I have seen bike racks with 8 or 10 bikes parked in the amount of space that would fit a medium sized car. Thus this would mean sacrificing one car spot to meet the needs of many cyclists. In Amsterdam, I saw several thousand bikes fit into a 3 storey bike parkade. It’s hard to imagine how massive a car parkade would have to be to fit that many cars.
  2. bike racks are much cheaper and quicker to install
  3. more bike racks means more cyclists will come through and visit the area. Because they’re on bike (and not paying for gas or insurance), they’ll have more cash to spend in those shops.

Here’s a video link from Street Films that shows what’s happening in New York.

http://www.streetfilms.org/trading-car-parking-for-bike-racks/

Unfortunately many local businesses don’t see it this way and thus are opposed to this idea. So here’s a comic that shows how this thinking is actually illogical, courtesy of Bikeyface.

Not-Cyclists

There has been a move to build more infrastructure for cyclists here. However, with limited space on the road, this comes at a cost… which has local businesses concerned.

People

But there is the issue. How can you tell how you tell a driving customer from a walking customer from a biking customer? Especially when a cyclist is not a “cyclist”…

People

…just like a driver is not a “driver.”

They are both customers. But drivers tend to pass through towns, and those on bike or on foot will spend time at local businesses. And the goal of business is to get more customers, and bike infrastructure will bring more of these not-cyclists down their particular street- with things to do, money to spend, time to stop.

People

Ultimately it’s not about biking, but creating a neighborhood where people will stop biking… and stay a while.

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