New bike lockers are coming

Councillor A.A. Heaps, the new chair of the Toronto Cycling Committee announced today that the City will be doubling the number of bike lockers around the city over the next four years.

Many of the new locker locations will be at transit stops. “We want it to be similar to the Kiss-n-Ride program, only this is Bike-and-Ride. We want people to know that bikes are not the poor brother of the City and are in fact a major part of our environmental plan, and a major part of our transportation network.”

The most immediate new installations will be at Rouge Hill GO station and Cedarvale Park near the west entrance of St. Clair West subway station. There will be six new lockers at each location.

The City will be installing more than 90 new bike lockers across the city in 2007. Currently, the City has 82 lockers in use, with about 54 people on a wait list. Lockers are available for $10 plus GST per month, for a minimum four-month duration and each locker has a unique key.

Since July 2006, the City has installed lockers at nine locations:

  • City Hall (Elizabeth street)
  • Exhibition Place
  • 371 Bloor West (at Spadina)
  • Downsview subway
  • Finch subway
  • Toronto Island Ferry Terminal
  • Metro Hall (King street)
  • St. Lawrence Market
  • OISE (252 Bloor Street)

Crossposted to I Bike TO

15 comments

  1. In the last thread that touched on the locker announcement I was hopeful but doubtful that Heaps would announce lockers at transit stops. But it makes me doubly happy that they’ll be doing this for the closest station to my house, St. Clair West, and be starting it while the Right of Way construction along St. Clair is at its most chatoic.

    Btw, from what I understand, “A.A.” is just the moniker Heaps wanted on his Council seat and official documents as a tribute to his dad. In print (it seems) and in person he goes by Adrian.

  2. I’m sure these bike lockers are nice, but maybe some caution in wider endorsation as they could eat public space, and do represent a bit of a privatization of it for obviously more well-off and don’t we need the same amount of public space made available for bikes on the roads vs. sidewalks?

  3. hamish

    you’re a pretty prolific commenter on TO blogs and once, just once, I’d like to read something you write that isn’t a god damned complaint or gripe.

    The only we can fix Toronto with sustainable solutions are to get some in, examine their impact, improve them and expand their deployment as part of an integrated process. That applies to transit, daycare, affordable housing and yes, cycling infrastructure.

  4. i agree hamish. they could be designed much much better. i was excited (since bike theft is such as problem) until i saw how “god damned” ugly and bulky they were.

  5. Giving these things for exclusive use is not the ideal solution. It would be nice if lockers were available for transit users on a fee-for-time basis, like parking spaces – they could be in every TTC and GO lot. Perhaps Metropasses could be used for a day’s access – just the way parking lots are. The more that cyclists are treated to a parallel universe, the better city we become.

  6. I’d love to see these things at the suburban subway stations. If there was one at Wilson, the closest stop to me, I’d sign up, as it would save me from the oh-so-unreliable bus service in the morning and evening. (I live a bit too far from work to rely solely on a bike). If the TTC has free Metropass parking for car drivers at Wilson, why not free secure bike parking spaces?

    The other option is to find some way to allow bikes on the subways and GO trains during the peak periods. One thing that I really liked was in San Jose, where the LRT cars were designed with bicycles in mind – vertical bike mounts in the centre allow for bikes to be carried at all times.
    And since the newer SUV-sized strollers can be as much an obstacle (and unlike other systems, the TTC allows large, unfoldable strollers), why not give this some thought.

    That would make me a bicycle commuter.

    Photo of a VTA (San Jose) LRT interior:

    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v297/spmarshall/PCH/VTA2.jpg

  7. Going with Hamish and Sookie – I don’t really “get” these locker-things and I am an avid cyclist. Who is clamouring for them? You could probably lock up six bikes in the space of the three lockers in the pic. And I thought lockers in transit stations and such were done away with years ago due to security fears of bombs.

  8. A lot of stations have a ton of wasted space inside them. Maybe this space could be used for lockers.

  9. mobius – future lockers may change now the contract for selling Toronto infrastructure to Astral has been approved but that’s an interesting observation. Perhaps the extra space is to deal with differing bike sizes as well as stuff like helmets?

  10. I really don’t see the need. The powers that be might say “Look, we gave you those nice, shiny bike lockers. There’s not enough in the budget for more bike lanes too.”

    I’ve had three or four bikes stolen over the years but none in Toronto (touch wood). I’ve always double-locked here. Not one for putting cams everywhere, but train one on major bike lockups at stations and such if theft is a worry.

    Waste of plastic and/or metal and a major eyesore and space-waster to boot.

    The suggestion above to put them inside transit stations I would amend to – put regular lockup posts inside the outdoor portions of those stations that have outdoor areas under their control (i.e. Pape).

  11. I think lockers could be just the beginning of total bike service stations at transit hubs. Union would be the obvious place to start.

    I agree with Ron that they should be ‘pay as you play’ – and be avail just for the day. They should be as easy and cheap to use as possible.

    Inside stations/video monitors are really smart ideas.

    for me personally right now, I would have used lockers if they were at Dundas West and the bus station at Bay and Dundas in the last year. Of course, I’d like to see lockers (or secure parking and other bike services) at most transit stations.

  12. This seems dumb to me. Just use a double lock if you are concerned about theft.

  13. We gotta get out of that mindset though – the number of bike lockers being related to number of bike lanes. The notion that there is only one pot for transit or for cycling or whatever is spread by lazy bureaucrats who don’t want to explore revenue offsets or co-location or other stuff that might reduce costs because they’d have to work for a living.

    In reality the lockers are more likely to be related to the fine grain of the Astral contract, and it could be that if we want any more than was specified in the tender docs the City will have to pony up to Astral!

  14. The lockers are useful, but only provide a service to a very small handful of people. I think a better use of money and space would be rows of regular racks, with a roof covering and good lighting.

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