Bike Parking: Guidelines & Resources

Ride by Landscape Forms

I have been paying closer attention to bike parking lately and wanted to share with you a few resources that I found useful.

First,, is a good site to gather information on what to avoid, what cyclists want, installation of bike racks and lockers, and about finishes that will help you when designing spaces for bike parking.

For example, here is a list of things that cyclists want:

Heavy-duty material on which to lock.

Racks placed in line of sight from building, near entrance and constant foot traffic.

Give cyclists the choice of regular racks or security racks.

Sheltered or even inside a building is a definite plus.

Functioning, quality lockers.

A dedicated cage is quite the rage.

Makes sense right? Well, here are a few common mistakes to avoid:

Installed too close to wall. Bikes can’t park perpendicularly at a rack designed for 5 bikes.

Again, installed without regard to the bikes actually parking. No room in front or on sides of rack.
Wheel Bender 1
Can’t really lock your frame to this design. Bye-bye bike!
Wheel Bender 2
Same story. Also note how often the material has been cut by bike thieves.
Misinstalled 1
These were supposed to be installed 90° to what you see here. Complete waste.
Misinstalled 2
Racks installed too close together. Also, attached wimpy cables to rack offers nothing.
Locker Settle
Lockers without built-in door frames WILL settle, causing door opening problems.
Notice how seams are not welded. This makes a weak locker.
Particle Board
Combat boots easily kick in water-soaked particle board lockers.
Locker Fire
These needed to be replaced since they did not use fire-resistant resin.
Mangled Flanges
Flange covers are just plain stupid.
Rack Rust
Look at these “new” racks at the S.F. Zoo.
When will primates learn to think about finish before installing
racks next to the ocean?

Next, the SF Bicycle Coalition is “Promoting the Bicycle for Everyday Transportation.” Their website offers information on local events and bike rallies, Safety and Security Tips, Maps, Bike Laws, and other resources. The most useful resource that I found was The Bicycle Parking Guidelines that was published by the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals. The guidelines give recommendations on rack design, layout and spacing, and proximity to buildings. The guidelines also mention the need for creative designs, as well. Which leads me to my final point.

There are a number of product manufacturers that produce bike racks. One that is worth mentioning is, Landscape Forms. Although, a few of their designs break the general guidelines in the above resources, I have to say their line of bike racks pushes the design beyond the status quo. I plan to write a separate blog post reviewing each design, but the Ride is by far my fav.

Feel free to leave a comment and share other resources that you have found helpful.

Published in Blog


  1. Informative Guidelines & Resources. It is hard to find quality products and materials with “great design”.

    Here are some other great choices from Forms+Surfaces:

  2. Check out SiteScapes, Inc. (, manufacturer of bike racks.

  3. Thanks for the great info/pics of construction, and I look forward to the design review/separate blog you mention!

  4. On the standard inverted “U” bike racks, could someone secure a wheel AND frame with a U-lock? Or would you have to use a cable?

  5. Michael,
    I have seen many cyclists here in the city use a mini U-lock to secure their frame and wheel, then a cable to lock to the bike rack. I bought a larger U-lock that easily locked the wheel & frame to the rack. But, it is a pain to carry around. The mini U-locks are much easier to carry on your person.

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