An alert citizen reports this morning that somebody took offense to the Hubway bike-rental station outside the Brigham Circle Diner on Huntington Avenue.
That could happen if some drunkard backed into it.
You mean putting them in the street instead of on the sidewalks wasn't a good idea??! Who would have guessed??
Boston already puts too much crap on the sidewalks, in poorly planned fashion.
People still need a place to walk - so taking a couple of parking spaces is still the right answer - a couple of bollards would help, though.
These Hubway stations take up far too much room, be it on sidewalk or street. The whole thing was a bad idea in the first place, and my prediction is that it will not fly.
There's so much wasted sidewalk, especially in places like Brigham Circle, it's not even funny.
That triangle of brick and cement between the two sidewalks isn't big enough for a Hubway rack?
Maybe they could convince 1 Brigham Circle that a rack would bring customers to their doorstep...
Or they could just use big expanses of sidewalk.
The point is, that they are/were intentionally using parking spaces and it has nothing to do with crammed sidewalks. There's a huge tab of sidewalk at Harvard and Comm Ave in Allston where they couldn't fit another parking space in front of where Uno's used to be...but they put it in the parking spaces right next to the ex-Uno's on Harvard St (I've read they since moved it). This was a marketing move, not a safety move or feasibility move. Funny, though, they took up some of that oh-so-precious sidewalk in the South End on Tremont St instead of displacing parking/valet there. Odd, that, eh?
While I agree with 1 Brigham Circle, I don't agree that there are large tracts of sidewalk in that area just waiting for Hubway racks. Especially with the way that some scooter owners think they can just drop anchor at any pole and block whatever they please to (not saying you do this, but I saw one whopper of a douchlocking job downtown just now).
That "big expanses of sidewalk" you show is nowhere near large enough if we still expect people with wheelchairs to navigate that intersection - and it is a hospital and elderly zone.
Not to mention an extremely busy crosswalk, AND a heavily used bus stop. There are days when I have trouble negotiating that big expanse of sidewalk in time to make it across Huntington in the space of the pedestrian crossing light because of the crowds - adding a Hubway rack would make things even worse.
Having taken a second look, I can say that these signs effectively ARE bollards. They're just aluminum, plexiglass and some lights, and they protect the rack on one side.
Bollards tend to scuff, rather than shatter.
True, but what's important is that these signs stand between something more valuable and the car traffic.
Are those scooter tracks???
Though obviously your concern was validated, I think choice to inconveniencing drivers over pedestrians in placing Hubway stations was a good one. It may also help to signal those using Hubway bikes that they belong on the street and not the sidewalk. The sidewalk there is not that wide for pedestrians and people getting Hubway bikes.
Motorists and cyclists have an obligation to be mindful of when using the roads. The same dope who backed in to the station could have backed into a parked car or cut off a cyclist just as easily.
Dude, the sidewalks need to remain wide enough for wheelchair users.
But whoever decided to cut corners by not putting bollards around the Hubway stations, that dude needs to be hauled to the carpet.
In many areas, the sidewalk isn't city property.
Because the first thing the business that owns it would say is: "Wait, you mean there'd be a dedicated stream of people who would HAVE to see my store front if they wanted to get a bicycle? Pass."
The business owner isn't the property owner, dumbass. Everyone leases, by and large.
The landlord would almost certainly try to bend the city over. If they didn't, the business owner would want to know why they were paying, but the city wasn't.
Then the business owner would say "Wait, you mean there'd be something blocking access to my business and hiding signage?" (the bikes are fairly tall, and the giant sign at the end even more so.) Business owners care very, very strongly about what is in front of their shop.
I like how according to you I know so little...but at least I know the landlord is also, ta-da, a business owner. I quite explicitly said "the business who owns it (the sidewalk)". Do you think the landlord doesn't want more people to come to his leased storefronts? If the landlord can drive more people to the storefront, then he can rent the place for more money because "look, unlike other leases, mine has a dedicated revenue stream coming from Hubway users flocking to your front door!".
Do you have any concept of what percentage of Zipcars are currently located in the parking lots of businesses and not municipal lots or private residences? I'd hazard a guess of about 80% of them...and I'm probably being conservative there.
So, you're going to argue that landlords, who themselves are...gasp...business owners, want Zipcars but they won't want Hubway bikes on site?
Do you think the landlord doesn't want more people to come to his leased storefronts?
GO TALK TO STORE OWNERS. They have a very strong NIFOMS (Not In Front Of My Store) view. They fiercely protect clear sidewalk in front of their businesses.
Further, landlords care very, very heavily about liability. The city would never in a million years offer the kind of indemnification Zipcar does. Go read the Hubway contract for an example of just how much ass-covering the city/Altus went with compared to the other bike share systems in the country.
Kaz: The owners will like having bikes out front.
Brett: The business owner isn't the property owner, dumbass.
Kaz: Well, I said the owner of the sidewalk. The landlord wants people at his leases too.
Brett: GO TALK TO STORE OWNERS.
Sorry, I'm no good at ping pong, find a new partner.
I've seen a few tourists with bikes - and I asked them nicely to leave the sidewalk in the State St. and Faneul Hall areas.
What I have seen a lot of in the morning and evening: people carrying helmets and briefcases walking up, snagging a bike, and riding. I am assuming that these are commuters who came up for air. I've seen a couple of people on the 326 Express Bus hauling helmets and doing this rather than taking the subway.
When the weather is this nice, why not get some exercise and fresh air and save some time? If it pours in the evening, you don't have to figure out what to do with the bike.
My bike is out of commission, so rather than walk from S.Station to the financial district, I've used the hubway- twice now and it was fine. Bikes are a bit slow and unwieldy, but fine from point a to point B. Can't wait to have them in Cambridge too- although I saw a bunch of them around the square on Saturday and Sunday.
I've got to say it makes me SO angry that they didn't plan bike lanes or MUP's for the Greenway, such an ass-backwards move spearheaded by a VC. Guess what Mr. Schimek, average people don't like to ride in 3 lanes of highway off ramp, so tourists, and even car free, bike everywhere me, are going to ride on the greenway. I'm super considerate to pedestrians and won't ride on crowded sidewalks, but I don't have a problem riding on the 10' wide sidewalks through there, slowly and giving pedestrians warning and 3' of space.
How much does it cost? Is it a monthly fee, or just pay-as-you-go? I've been thinking of using the ones on Overland St. near Fenway instead of my customary shuttle from Lansdowne. Although I don't know if I can justify spending the money.
$5 to try it for a day. $60 a year.
Plus whatever cost covers the minutes you use the bike if you go over 29 minutes.
Sixty dollars a year isn't that bad. And my ride would definitely be less than half an hour. Considering... Thanks for the help, folks!
$60 is the current rate as they try to drum up a lot of new business early, but they've stated the regular rate is $85. Also, the bikes won't be on the streets between sometime in November and sometime in February (start and end of "winter season" left to their discretion based on likelihood of snow). The "annual" fee only gives access for 3 seasons as the whole system is shut down for the winter season.
Of course, that's still a pretty reasonable deal in the end, but it's always good to know all the caveats.
Yeah, I ended up going to the site and saw that stuff. I think it might still be up my alley, since I hate the cold of winter and wouldn't be likely to want to ride then anyway. And yeah, an extra $2 a month would still be pretty reasonable. Still don't know yet, but I really do dig the idea of this.
Don't mean to take a rhetorical question literally, but that's why I don't "get some exercise and fresh air": I have an office gig wherein folks might look askance at a drippy guy with dark damp stains stinking up windowless conference rooms.
I've genuinely wondered how people do the bike-commute thing: Does everyone have access to a shower at work but me, or am I just sweatier than most? And do they travel with an extra set of (work) clothes, or just leave 'em in the office? But then, how often can you wear the same pants and shirt without swapping 'em out?
I've never worked in an office that doesn't have showers, but I've always worked for pretty big (500+ person) companies.
I've used these bikes 4 times so far to avoid the Haymarket-BackBay trip on the Orange Line, and each time I broke less of a sweat compared to the stifling heat of the Orange Line tunnels.
I ride from Medford to Boston in my work clothes if the weather is mild. Usually, I wear bike clothing for comfort and bring a change of clothes. HOWEVER, a full commute for me is an eight mile, forty-five minute trek!
A mile or two? No worries ... or ... no sweat. I have no problem getting from home to Davis Square or back - 2.5 miles with some hills - or one mile to the train station and another to the office in a presentable state! (with the exception of July 20, 21, 22, when the mere act of being outside caused profuse sweating).
None of the people I've seen riding hubways are sweating, probably because they seem to be riding short distances at relatively low intensity.
What they are doing is multimodal commuting, not bike commuting.
Of course, your biology may vary.
Though my office does have a shower or two, I've never used them. I commute by bike year round, and have for the 3+ years I've been at this (corporate law) job, and the 3+ I spent at the office before this one.
I most often bike in "bike clothes" (or, "clothes I can sweat in"), and change into work clothes at the office. I keep a stash of work clothes in my desk, and rotate things out to launder as I wear them. Office heels live at the office, and just in case I keep deodorant in my desk.
It took a few months for the security guards in the building to get to know me and remember not to chase me down thinking I'm a rogue messenger; it took longer for my coworkers to catch on to my quick-change habits, and I still occasionally have someone I hold meetings with suggest that I might want to head to 40 to get to the mailroom (though I've pressed the button for my floor) or lament the heat and tell me to be careful out there (thanks). At this point, people are coming around - and I've become the person HR directs new hires to when they ask about the options for riding to work.
Long story short: it's doable, even for salty sweaters like myself, and even in the summer, if you take your time, change and give yourself a few minutes to cool down. Bonus: I'm wide awake and ready to go when I get to work, rather than still lethargic and cranky from fighting for space on the T.
A ride from South Station to North Station shouldn't cause anyone to break a sweat unless it's a hot, 90-degree day. I perspire a lot, but for the short, multi-modal commute contemplated by hubway, it is probably less sweaty than walking the same distance.
I regularly bike commute all the way in which is a moderate 7-9 mile ride. I think you can do that ride in bike clothes, riding moderately (45 minutes), in up to 70 degree weather and still be able to survive without a shower at work.
But we do have a shower. So I did that ride today in 35 minutes, carrying pants, shirt, socks, underwear and belt in a messenger bag. I have an extra pair of shoes at work so I do not have to carry them every time I ride. It's business casual attire. Another strategy people use is to alternate bike days, so you bring the clothes in and out on days you are not riding.
I use a change of clothes for when I arrive at work, and a quick sponge bath becuase Harvard doesn't provide me with a shower (bastards!).
This is why we can't have nice things
They put the Brigham Circle station in an incredibly stupid spot (mainly because Brigham Circle is an incredibly complicated intersection). I know they have to use city property, but they should have partnered with One Brigham Circle and put a nice prominent station somewhere along that plaza. Would be a major draw for Stop & Shop, JP Licks, Walgreens, etc.
I have been wondering how long it will be before someone comes by at night and slashes 20 tires on those bikes. the bikes are a great idea for the city, but also a great target for people with nothing better to do.
Tires are heavy duty, hard to slash.
But the idiocy is that they didnt use reflective soft hit posts or any other kind of barrier around these stations.
Thats road design 101.
Those things are cheap, can be installed in minutes, and do a pretty good job of warding off SUVs (that is, slow, parking ones, not out of control ones obviously).
Alta has had a terrible launch, and need to get their act together NOW.
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