Having available car parking and easy access to your site is critical. But it's as important to have adequate bike parking to ensure that your site can accommodate any and all visitors. The importance of bike parking only continues to grow as more and more people opt for a bike over a car. Is your site accessible to bikers? Do you have enough bike racks? Are they the right type of bike racks?
These are a few of many questions you must ask yourself during the bike rack buying process. This guide is designed to answer those questions, simplify the process, and help you determine the best bike parking for your location.
Deciding what you or your organization is willing to spend on a bike rack is a good place to start, because your budget may also impact the type of the rack. Commercial bike racks can range from $100 to over $1,300 depending on their capacity, material, style, and size. Find a price range that works within your budget and go from there. No matter your price range, there's a wide selection of bike racks to choose from:
$0 - $199.99 $200 - $349.99 $350 - $549.99 $550 - $1,375
Styles / Material
There are many different styles of bike racks, so it’s important that you find the one that fits best with your site. First consider material: Steel, recycled plastic, and stone are the most popular options. The material not only influences the style of the bike rack, but also the durability and longevity. Coated steel is weather resistant and ideal for outdoor locations. Concrete or stone is not only durable, but the weight of the material acts as a natural theft deterrent as well. Recycled plastic offers a unique style and sustainability.
Next, consider if you’re looking for a modern style, a space saving loop style or traditional style bike rack, or Bollard style.
Bike racks are not only functional, but can also serve as a design focal point or compliment. Most properties have their bike racks in front of the building so choosing the right style and maintaining your bike racks can make a lasting impression to your customers, employees, and visitors.
Mounting type is a key feature when determining placement of your bike rack. There are several options available to keep your bike rack secure. Consider the following mounting options when shopping for a bike rack:
- Surface mounting – The bike rack is anchored onto a flat surface. This provides a stable installment while also allowing you to relocate the rack if necessary.
- In-ground mounting – The bike rack is buried in a concrete or other stable foundation. This bike rack mounting type is the most permanent and secure but requires the most labor to install.
- Vertical Wall Mounting – The bike rack is mounted to a wall in order to conserve floor space.
- Portable – Freestanding bike rack that sits on the ground unsecured. With portable bike racks, it’s important to select a heavy bike rack that won’t tip over or be easily moved. Anchor kits are generally available if security is important.
Your bike rack will likely be placed outside in the elements which make durability an extremely important feature. You will want to find a bike rack that will last for years and still look presentable. The durability of a bike rack can vary based on the materials and coatings used, so a warranty is the best way to ensure your bike rack’s longevity. Pay attention to the warranty that’s offered and what that warranty covers. The Fusion Advantage™ is a great example of both warranty and durability; learn more here.
Capacity refers to the number of bikes that a bicycle rack can hold. Some factors that will help you decide bike rack capacity includes space, site traffic, and budget. If you are located in a high traffic area, such as a park or shopping center you might consider higher capacity bike racks that will allow for heavy use. When planning space for bike racks make sure to include space not just for the rack itself, but the space needed if the rack had the maximum number of bikes secured to it. No matter your capacity needs, there's a wide selection of bike racks to choose from:
1 – 2 Bikes 3 – 5 Bikes 6 – 10 Bikes More than 10 Bikes
After selecting the right price, style, material, and capacity of bike rack, you now have to pick the optimal location. It is important to place bike racks in locations that are easy to see for the cyclists and in high traffic or common gathering areas for cyclists. Entryways, courtyards, and along walking paths are great locations for bike racks.