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So often the news about interactions with people who bike and those who don’t are about so-called “bikelash” where one group is mad at the other. It’s refreshing to hear a story like this one.

Kroger in Old Louisville installed some bike racks, but someone who probably didn’t know any better put them too close to a wall rendering them mostly useless. Instead of anyone getting bent out of shape, one cycling customer simply filled out the input form on the back of his receipt and problem solved.

Positioned too close to the wall, the rack only holds a couple bikes. (Courtesy Bicycling for Louisville)
Positioned too close to the wall, the rack only holds a couple bikes. (Courtesy Bicycling for Louisville)

We learned about this bike rack ballet from Bicycling for Louisville (B4L). B4L president Chris Glasser told Broken Sidewalk that he heard about the issue from a member on the group’s Facebook page. “I emailed Kroger, and they confirmed they were looking into it,” he said. “Then I went by Friday and saw it had been moved.”

If a bike rack is positioned too close to a wall, cyclists cannot safely lock up their bikes, limiting the number of bikes that the rack can hold. Against the wall, these racks hold two bikes. With a little more spacing they can hold over a dozen.

“I just filled out the feedback form on the receipt,” cyclist John Paul told Broken Sidewalk. “I was in there [this weekend] and thanked the manager.”

The fixed bike rack. (Courtesy Bicycling for Louisville)
The fixed bike rack. (Courtesy Bicycling for Louisville)

“It’s crazy the positive reactions it’s gotten,” Glasser added. “Those bike racks got more likes [on our Facebook page] than we get about new bike lanes.” He speculated that people were so tuned in because many cyclists feel the frustration of bike infrastructure designed or installed by non-cyclists who don’t know better.

This is a case that shows that a little communication can go a long way. As Louisville settles into its Silver bike-friendly rating from the Bike League, it’s nice to see a potential conflict just fizzle with no drama at all. Let’s keep this up, Louisville.

Next up? Paul said he’d like to see sheltered bike racks installed at other local grocery stores.

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Branden Klayko

Branden Klayko

Founder and Editor at Broken Sidewalk
Branden founded Broken Sidewalk in 2008 while practicing architecture in Louisville. He continued the site for seven years while living in New York City, returning to Louisville in 2016. Branden is a graduate of the College of Architecture at Washington University in St. Louis, and has covered architecture, design, and urbanism for The Architect's Newspaper, Designers & Books, Inhabitat, and the American Institute of Architects.
Branden Klayko

2 COMMENTS

  1. Please also comment about trees (plant some!) and replacing dead trees (highlands Kroger, Fifth Third Bank, and Walgreens…..your projects were approved WITH landscaping!). Fifth Third has all trees dying or dead. Bikes n trees! Yay!! kroGhetto has zero trees. zero.

  2. I think that’s the Kroger on second Street. The one in the Highlands has a poorly-installed rack, also. I’ll have to look to see if they have a comment card.

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