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View Full Version : Metro to offer free covered and secured bike parking at some stations...



Terpfan
11-13-2015, 01:03 PM
Apologize if this is a repost. Just saw this on the WaPo:


"In an effort to encourage travel to the Metro station by bicycle, Metro is expanding bike facilities, introducing free, covered and secure storage at several stations.

Bike storage rooms will open at East Falls Church and Vienna next month. And Metro has recently converted its covered Bike & Ride at College Park into a free-of-charge facility accessible with a registered SmarTrip card."
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/dr-gridlock/wp/2015/11/13/metro-introduces-free-covered-and-secured-bike-parking/?hpid=hp_local-news_gridlock-bikeparking-1245pm%3Ahomepage%2Fstory

Hopefully they just expand this philosophy system wide at every station.

ginacico
11-13-2015, 01:27 PM
I've talked to the station manager at East Falls Church, and their bike & ride facility is under construction due to open next month. Vienna is in the works too.

Vaya is too theft-prone to lock up outside, but I've stalled on paying for a bike locker knowing this is coming soon. Especially in the winter, options are good. I just wonder how crowded it will get, as a lot of people bike to that station.

Agreed, I hope Metro plans to build them everywhere!

Steve O
11-13-2015, 02:19 PM
Bike storage rooms will open at East Falls Church and Vienna next month.

Have you been to EFC lately? That seems optimistic. It's just a fence around a bunch of mud.

Terpfan
11-13-2015, 02:24 PM
Have you been to EFC lately? That seems optimistic. It's just a fence around a bunch of mud.

I haven't. But with Metro, a big grain of salt is usually needed.

Hopefully they follow through quickly so that during snowfalls it will still enable some who usually don't ride (cough myself) to make it multi-modal.

ginacico
11-13-2015, 02:42 PM
Have you been to EFC lately? That seems optimistic. It's just a fence around a bunch of mud.

Yup, that's still the case. The signs and the station manager are sticking to their story of completion in December.

ginacico
11-15-2015, 10:40 AM
We rode up to College Park yesterday, and made a point to see the new Bike & Ride facility there. If the others (pending at East Falls Church and Vienna) are this nice, it will be a huge step up in secure, bike friendly accommodations for Metro.

A bike repair station, with tools and air pump, is outside. Inside is a huge, covered space with many U-racks and some of those elevator racks. Note there's a security camera watching inside the locked gate.

You'll have to register for Bike & Ride with a registered SmarTrip card, which can be done online.

10088100891009010091

PotomacCyclist
11-16-2015, 06:30 AM
I've talked to the station manager at East Falls Church, and their bike & ride facility is under construction due to open next month. Vienna is in the works too.

Vaya is too theft-prone to lock up outside, but I've stalled on paying for a bike locker knowing this is coming soon. Especially in the winter, options are good. I just wonder how crowded it will get, as a lot of people bike to that station.

Agreed, I hope Metro plans to build them everywhere!

These bike rooms could be very useful for outer suburban stations. I also hope they manage to build more of these facilities. They may have seen how popular the new Wiehle-Reston bike room is. (It is popular, isn't it? I haven't seen that bike room myself, but I think people have said that a lot of people are biking to the Silver Line stations.)

But there isn't as much of a need for a bike room at the more central/urban Metro stations. There wouldn't be enough room either, at central stations like Farragut West and Gallery Place.

Bike rooms might be useful at stations not-quite-in-central-DC but not too far out either. Would there be a need at locations like Stadium-Armory, Columbia Heights, Cleveland Park and Braddock Rd.? I'm not sure.

There is a large bike room at Union Station. That makes sense because people bike to Union Station before departing on long-distance trips on Amtrak. A lot of people do bike to the Farragut West/Farragut North area, but not to the same building.

ginacico
11-16-2015, 12:22 PM
Getting a little more specific about how to register for Bike & Ride......

I received this info from WMATA today:

"Yes the Bike and Ride facility is still on track to be completed by December/January at East Falls Church. It will be free using your Smart Trip card as long as it is registered with WMATA. You can actually register your card online now with WMATA if you like so when the Bike and Ride facility is completed you will be on our pre-registered list and will be granted access immediately. Also your Smart Trip card must start with the number 0167 on the back to be used at the Bike and Ride facility."

I have an old SmarTrip card with the wrong numbers, so I called to ask how to meet that requirement. They said just to buy a new SmarTrip card. Then if I call them back (SmarTrip® Customer Service at 1-888-762-7874) they can transfer my balance from the old card to a new one, which might take up to 48 hours, and the old card will be deactivated.

ginacico
11-16-2015, 12:34 PM
These bike rooms could be very useful for outer suburban stations.

I don't disagree with this. At the very least, I could envision bike rooms at all the same stations that have parking lots or garages. Since bike rooms take up a lot less space, I would hope Bike & Ride could be more widespread.

The bike room at Union Station is called Bikestation, which is privately run and you have to pay for a membership ($12/month or $96/year). I had considered using it when I was living in Anne Arundel County and commuting via MARC train. But I found Capital Bikeshare to be more convenient and flexible than keeping my own bike at Union Station.

Steve O
11-16-2015, 12:58 PM
I have an old SmarTrip card with the wrong numbers, so I called to ask how to meet that requirement. They said just to buy a new SmarTrip card. Then if I call them back (SmarTrip® Customer Service at 1-888-762-7874) they can transfer my balance from the old card to a new one, which might take up to 48 hours, and the old card will be deactivated.

You can also do all of this on line if you set up a SmarTrip account.
If I were you I would just keep the old card for use by out of town visitors or as back up.

Steve O
11-16-2015, 01:00 PM
Also, if you didn't see the video about the College Park station by our own Forum participant, Justin Antos, watch:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7TbZpXCnlCs

PotomacCyclist
11-16-2015, 01:41 PM
On a more general note about SmarTrip, if you register the card online, you will be able to retrieve the balance if you ever lose the card.

(Some people may object over privacy concerns, but registration is optional.)

ginacico
11-16-2015, 03:55 PM
You can also do all of this on line if you set up a SmarTrip account.
If I were you I would just keep the old card for use by out of town visitors or as back up.

I got a new card today, and registered it with my SmarTrip account. The "Card Type #4" cards are the ones they need for Bike & Ride.

You can transfer $ from and old card to a new one online, but it's under the option to Report Cards as Lost, Stolen Damaged or Malfunctioning. There's no way to do it without deactivating the old card, unfortunately. I kept both cards, and just added $ to the new one. The steps to register for Bike & Ride also include a place to register your bike(s) with Metro Transit Police.

So the "Bike Link" card idea that he mentioned in the video didn't happen? I don't mind free, and it's easier not to manage another card.

ginacico
03-28-2016, 12:05 PM
There is progress at the East Falls Church bike & ride facility - finally!

After sitting dormant since December, there were cement trucks lined up this morning and they were pouring the foundation.

11349

11350

I'm not even going to speculate on their excuses for the delays. Just nice to see something happening. Y'know, now that the weather is nice enough not to care.

Steve O
03-28-2016, 12:45 PM
On a more general note about SmarTrip, if you register the card online, you will be able to retrieve the balance if you ever lose the card.


And if someone finds it and starts using it, you can retrieve "their" money from the card, too. Not that I would know.