Secure bike storage: report highlights widespread shortage

AN estimated third of people living in Scotland don’t have a safe and secure place to store their bike at home.

The calculation is based on the number of people who live in high-rises and tenements, with national cycling organisation, Cycling Scotland, saying, here: “Of the 2.6 million residential properties in Scotland, just over 37 per cent (980,290) are flats in tenements, high-rises and apartment blocks that have no private outdoor space for sheds or garages where people can safely store their bikes.”

Cycling Scotland adds: “The issue is felt more acutely in local authorities with the highest percentage of flats as a proportion of all residential properties: Glasgow (72 per cent), Edinburgh (65 per cent), Aberdeen (55 per cent), West Dunbartonshire (51 per cent) and Dundee (51 per cent).

It continues to note:

* In the absence of proper storage, people are forced to lock their bikes in communal closes, stairwells, hallways, balconies, railings – or in their homes;

* Almost half (46 per cent) of social housing residents are unlikely to have somewhere suitable to store a bike;

* In addition to being more likely to have no bike storage, people living in social housing are four times less likely to own a car than owner-occupiers; having a safe storage place is even more important if they want to use their bikes to access employment, education, and vital services reliably and affordably;

* Retro-fitting cycle storage in residential areas is limited. Just two Scottish local authorities, Edinburgh and Glasgow – where the percentage of people living in flats is highest – are implementing city-wide on-street bike-parking schemes;

* There is no requirement to provide residential cycle storage in national planning and transport policies, and little detail about minimum standards;

* Local planning policies and guidance are the most influential factors in determining the level and quality of cycle storage on new residential developments. Planning policies and guidance among Scottish local authorities on cycle storage vary significantly with most only making brief reference to provision and few giving any detail about cycle-storage standards; and

* The differing needs of people who cycle – particularly those who use non-standard bikes or who are disabled – are unrecognised.

Picture credit: Place Design Scotland

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