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The Planning Office, seeking to encourage cycling for convenience, fitness, commuting and cleaner air, has recommended installing higher security bicycle racks and doubling the spaces for bikes over the next five years.
The first of the higher security bike racks has been installed as a pilot project by the Planning Office and the Grounds Section of Physical Plant. The new red rack is located between Buildings 12 and 26. Constructed of heavy duty steel coated with 12mm of polyester plastic, it is designed to allow the locking of both frame and wheel(s) for added security.
The patented design also provides a vertical plane to support the bicycle frame. Cyclists are encouraged to try out the new rack, and send in their comments and reactions by interdepartmental mail to The Planning Office, Room 12-156, or by e-mail to
The rack is the immediate result of a bicycle study recently completed by the Planning Office with the assistance of an Ad Hoc Advisory Committee on Bicycle Commuting and Services. The study evaluated existing conditions for cyclists to determine how MIT can promote and encourage cycling on the campus and as an alternative mode of commuting.
Michael Owu, associate planning officer, said the study's recommendations address issues raised by the Federal Clean Air Act and the new Cambridge Parking Freeze Ordinance, which intend to reduce auto trips by encouraging alternative modes of commuting.
The present population of bicycle commuters to the main campus is estimated at 1,920 or 10.7 percent of the MIT community. The study projects that this can be increased to 2,615 or 14.5 percent., primarily from commuters within five miles of the campus.
To achieve this level of participation, the report recommends the following actions be taken over a five-year period:
- ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½The addition of higher security bicycle racks to increase the storage capacity from 1,460 bicycles to 3,140 bicycles
- ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½The promotion of new public bicycle ways to facilitate access to the campus from neighborhoods where the greatest number of community members lives. The Planning Office is beginning discussions on this subject with public works and traffic officials from Cambridge and other municipalities, the Metropolitan District Commission, and the state.
- The development and distribution of educational and promotional information targeted toward specific MIT populations
- The vigorous enforcement of traffic rules that could help to ensure the safety of cyclists
- The implementation of an enhanced bicycle registration program.
A version of this article appeared in the May 12, 1993 issue of MIT Tech Talk (Volume 37, Number 32).