Different variables must be taken into account in the design of bike racks. All important. Let us comment on a few of them.
SAFETY is possibly key role. Design, anchorageand location should be suitable to prevent theft or acts of vandalism.
CAPACITY planning is essential. How do you fix a lack of parking space?
Related to capacity is DENSITY or the ability to optimize parking lots in the available space.
Cycling destination ACCESSIBILITY and close LOCATION. The shorter the travel time, the shorter the distance to destination.
Mentioning on COMMUTING TIME, it is not the same for short commuting (a stop on a terrace or bar) than for a long commuting time (working hours or overnight).
In this sense, protection against BAD WEATHER CONDITIONS should be considered. We don’t want our bikes getting wet … nor too much sun!
Importance of the SUPPORT SYSTEM. The inverted U is widely accepted and recommended for its cost and level of comfort and safety.
Those with a fork or wheel rest are very widespread and could be an option for short time commuting. However, many cyclists refer to them as “wheel breakers”, in addition to their difficulty in securing the frame and wheels.
In any case, they have to be VERSATILE, to be able to carry any type and size of bike … and with STABILITY so that the bicycle remains supported in the best possible position.
The cyclist’s COMFORT must be taken into account. With easy access, room for maneuver and for minor repairs, without the risk of damaging other bikes or making great efforts to “hang” the bike.
The AESTHETICS of bike racks is an important element of the design process. A carefully integrated environmental friendly design gives confidence and makes parking attractive.
Finally, we must not forget the COST-benefit analysis and maintenance planning.
There are many solutions on the market: open, closed, single- or double-row, single- or double height storage, rack hangers, high or low density, underground, automatic …