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Committee gives nod to bike corrals in Minneapolis

Posted by: Tim Harlow under People, Transportation Updated: July 22, 2014 - 11:45 AM

The Minneapolis Transportation and Public Works Committee on Tuesday passed a motion to approve more on-street bike corrals.

Currently the Birchwood Cafe on E. 25th Street and the Smokehouse Brewpub on E. 38th Street have corrals, which consist of a group of bike racks installed adjacent to the curb in the parking lane of the roadway. But many other businesses say that demand for bicycle parking far exceeds the number of off-street bike racks on boulevards and sidewalks near their establishments.

They have been asking for the corrals as a way to meet the demand and supply on-street parking in much the same way that is available for vehicles.

If approved by the City Council, establishments will be able to apply for a bike corral and split the cost with the city.  A corral with room for 10 bicycles occupying one on-street parking space is projected to cost $1,800 the first year and $225 in subsequent years. A corral with 22 bike racks occupying two on-street spaces is $2,900 in the first year and $325 in subsequent years.

The City has $50,000 set aside for the program to cover seasonal installation, removal and storage costs, said Paul Cao, a parking systems analyst with Traffic and Parking Services.

Corrals would be seasonal from April 15 to Nov. 1. Establishments would be charged with the responsibility for upkeep and maintaining corrals for five years.

Cao said applications will be available once city staff set up an online link. Applications will be processed on a first-come, first-serve basis. Applications will be reviewed and locations determined based on citywide equity, geographic distribution and bicycle parking needs, Cao said.

If the city budget is exhausted, business could be allowed to pay the entire cost for a corral, Cao said.

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