What kind of fish is 18 feet long, 5 feet wide and can only be found on Seattle streets? Answer: the Seattle Department of Transportation’s (SDOT) new fish-shaped bike rack. On Thursday morning, June 10, at 10 a.m. the department will install one of these unique bike facilities in Wallingford on the northeast corner of N 34th Street and Woodlawn Avenue in front of the Essential Baking Company.
The unusual bicycle rack takes the place of one motor vehicle parking space while accommodating on-street bike parking for 14 bicycles and increasing sidewalk space for pedestrians by moving the bike rack off the sidewalk. In 2009, SDOT installed a car-shaped bike rack on 12th Avenue near Spring Street in front of the Café Presse and Stumptown Coffee. The rack has been very popular.
“Having the on-street bike rack out front is great for everyone,” said Jim Drohman, chef and owner of the Café Presse. “The loss of a single parking space has not been an inconvenience, the rack is full most of the time and we have heard a lot of positive feedback on its design.” He added that he’d love to get another rack nearby.
With funding from the Bridging the Gap transportation initiative, SDOT will install more of the on-street fish and car motif bike racks in neighborhoods around Seattle in the coming months, including racks on the corner of 12th Avenue and E Pike Street and on Melrose Avenue between Pike and Pine Streets. This program addresses the expanding need for bicycle parking and is part of the ongoing implementation of the Bicycle Master Plan, which seeks to triple the number of people bicycling in Seattle over ten years.
Installation is typically requested by the adjacent business owner when there is a high demand for bike parking and insufficient sidewalk space to accommodate that need. For more information or to request bicycle racks in your neighborhood, please contact the Seattle Department of Transportation at (206) 684-7583 or firstname.lastname@example.org.