Awards for the best bike parking in Chicago


Bike parking at the new, LEED-certified Dominick’s at Foster and Sheridan. This installation has several good qualities: it’s near the entrance, sheltered, has good clearance, and an acceptable rack style. Please nominate the best bike parking! 

At the Mayor’s Bicycle Advisory Council on Wednesday afternoon at City Hall, Bicycle Parking Program manager Christopher Gagnon recapped the year by saying the City installed 749 standard u-racks on sidewalks (more than usual because 2010 saw few installations), Wicker Park-Bucktown Special Service Area (SSA) donated 20+1 racks (including the City’s first bike corral), and Lincoln Park Chamber of Commerce donated 20 racks (you can see some on Clark Street).

That’s great! But what about that little part of the zoning code that requires property owners to provide bike parking? What do we know about them? Continue reading Awards for the best bike parking in Chicago

A walking tour of south suburban Riverdale opens my eyes


The Cook County Forest Preserve District recently installed a multi-use trail in the Kickapoo Meadows forest preserve. This is at 144th and Halsted in Riverdale, Illinois. 

This summer and fall I’ve been working with Active Transportation Alliance to develop bike parking plans for suburban schools and municipalities. This has given me a special opportunity to survey the conditions for walking and biking at numerous locations with a variety of environments unique to their geographies. This is the first article in a series that describes those visits. These plans are paid for by grants from Cook County and the Department of Health and Human Services called Communities Putting Prevention to Work. I’m calling this my “CPPW Series.”

I’m starting with the latest municipality I visited, Riverdale, Illinois. Riverdale is south of Chicago and shares a boundary with the Chicago neighborhoods of Altgeld Gardens, and West Pullman, separated by the Calumet River. You can drive to Riverdale on Halsted Street, or take the Metra Electric-University Park line to its two stations, Ivanhoe and Riverdale. Continue reading A walking tour of south suburban Riverdale opens my eyes

Grid Shots: A visitor from D.C.

M. Jantzen visited Chicago earlier in August 2011 and recently uploaded photos from his trip.


Upon arriving at Midway Airport, one is presented with three distinct types of fare vending machines. One takes cash only. Two take credit cards. One dispenses multi-day passes. Two add value to Chicago Cards. O’Hare Airport only has two types of machines and they have small signs above them that say “Cash only” or “Cash and credit.”


Fifty feet away from the vending machines, in the paid area, are two units of double deck bike racks that can hold 28 or more bicycles. It’s well-used, even in the “less warm” months of the year. 


You’ll pass the CNA building (333 S Wabash) on any of the elevated Loop ‘L’ lines. I like it because it’s not grey, black, or blue.

Reminder: On-street bike parking ribbon cutting is Friday


The city’s first on-street bike parking facility (or bike corral) was installed in Wicker Park this morning by crews from Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT). See more photos from the installation this morning. 

Friday, July 29, 2011
5 PM

Flat Iron Arts Building
1579 N Milwaukee Avenue

Join Transportation Commissioner Gabe Klein, 1st Ward Alderman Joe Moreno, Bicycle Parking Program Manager Christopher Gagnon, and Wicker Park-Bucktown Special Service Area Manager Eleanor Mayer to celebrate the city’s first bike corral. Then cross the street to Francesca’s Forno for drinks and refreshments.

Read more about Grid Chicago’s coverage of this on-street bike parking installation.


CDOT crews install the Tuff Curb on the southeast side of the bike corral. 

Wicker Park-Bucktown SSA moving ahead with bike rack installations

The Wicker Park-Bucktown (WPB) Special Service Area (SSA), a business improvement district, has purchased 20 specially-designed and orange-colored bike racks from Dero to be installed within the district (see a map on their website).


A beautiful work in progress. The u-rack is nearly identical to the latest model CDOT has used with the addition of a center piece showing the sustainable transportation modes residents and shoppers in Wicker Park and Bucktown use to get around. Photo courtesy of Dero. 
Continue reading Wicker Park-Bucktown SSA moving ahead with bike rack installations

Rack concerts: Tour de Fat and Pitchfork highlight the need for good bike parking at festivals

[flickr]photo:5952876061[/flickr]Chicago Reader Biker Village at Pitchfork

Last weekend there were at least two fabulously bike-friendly festivals in Chicago. New Belgium Brewery’s Tour de Fat celebrated craft beer, bicycles, bands and other forms of “sustainable folly,” raising thousands of dollars for West Town Bikes community bike shop. Meanwhile the Pitchfork Music Festival included the Chicago Reader Biker Village with an attended bike parking area that docked over 1,000 bikes at a time – and it still wasn’t nearly enough capacity. More on that later.

Continue reading Rack concerts: Tour de Fat and Pitchfork highlight the need for good bike parking at festivals