An Amusement & Diversion for The Genteel Cyclist. Daily.

Monday, June 18, 2007

The answer was hidden there among the trees: More bike racks, duh!


Over in Madison, Wisconsin, cyclists are pissed about an unusual civic phenom: the city is removing parking meters, thereby eliminating the only dependable bike lockups. While the basic gripe is sound--bikes need secure parking places, yo--it has led to some pretty twisted logic. One angry (and notably xenophobic) keypuncher has written to the local paper,


A lot of bikers, like drivers, want to pop into places for a cup of coffee or a CD or something. Removing their lock-up posts is going to mean less accessibility to downtown retailers, who don't need any more obstacles between themselves and their customers. Once again, in a rush to be more like other places and less like Madison ("They're everywhere in Europe!"), we've sacrificed something that helps define our sense of place. Downtown Madison is getting less interesting, not more so, with this move. And I can't say I've ever heard anyone complain about not being able to pay for parking.


Huh? When parking meters become something that distinguishes your city and makes it "unique," then you have what we'd call slim pickins, from a cultural point of view. By the way, we love Madtown--great cycling scene over there--and we suspect this letter-writer got himself painted into a rhetorical corner where there was nothing left to say except something idiotic.

2 comments:

Pinchie said...

Oh, and it's particularly ingenious to use parking meters for the simple reason that when there's gummint money on the line--all those quarters! they belong to THE MAN-- you can bet those suckers are sunk with six inch concrete bolts. (See previous story on lame bike racks in Brooklyn: http://www.pinchflatnews.com/2007/06/well-now-youd-think-someone-would-have.html

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