|Phoenix Bike Lockers with Her Secret is Patience|
|Trying out my first bicycle locker: spacious, room for two!|
|I counted 20 between this group and the group across the street|
|Very reasonable rules, although I'm not sure about the 10pm part, that's pretty early|
|Trying out my lock, I probably want a beefier one, something like...|
|...the lock on the left|
Bicycle lockers are a new thing for me. I've read about them, seen them online, certainly, but never put a bike into one and locked it up. Saturday changed all that. When I saw on PHXBIKE that these had been installed at Phoenix Central Station downtown, I knew I had to ride down there to have a look. Local transit related sites mention that the park-n-rides also have bike lockers, although the one at 38th and Washington doesn't seem to yet. Lockers open more possibilities for commuters: park-n-ride (your bike), ride a nicer bike because you can worry less about it being stolen, vandalized, or disassembled at an exposed rack, much simpler lock-up equipment and procedure since only a single secure padlock is needed, and also users of fancy British leather seats need not worry about weather, thieves, or vandals.
Bike lockers: one way for a city, or an employer for that matter, to demonstrate that they are serious about encouraging cyclists. Or for businesses to attract cyclist customers, although I don't know of any that have installed them for that reason.
Next question: can I get one for home? And another for my office?
|Downtown Phoenix on Saturday morning is a ghost town. Ball park ahead on the right.|
|I always feel like taking the exit.|
I attempted to do this ride by leaving at what was for me an early hour on Saturday morning in order to lower some of the effects of this current record-breaking heat wave, but was only semi-successful in this respect. It was 105F at 10am, and the humidity was higher than normal, with the result that I was feeling below optimal. After about 20 miles of hot pavement, I stopped beneath a shady tree to guzzle some water and gather my wits. Working in my favor was that Phoenix downtown streets are deserted on a Saturday morning, providing an extremely congenial environment for urban cycling. When I walked in the door at home, my wife handed me a tall cold fruit smoothy made with bananas and berries, which took the edge right off this hot summer morning ride.
Hmmm, perhaps the bike lockers could also dispense fruit smoothies.
On a related but slightly side note, I've seen some offhand comments about bike lockers being security risks, usually including the modifier "since 911". I suppose they could be in some settings, but these are right next to a street, which means anything you might hide in a bike locker for nefarious purposes could be exceeded many times over by what you can hide and transport in a vehicle. It's not that they present zero risk, but nothing does: think of all the things you can do with a park bench! Plus these would make good zombie defense pods once you figured out how to open and close them from the inside.
These are great, thanks Phoenix! Makes me want to ride out to the park-n-rides to see what those look like.