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Tempe campus bicycle racks promote safety, preserve landscaping

A rack filled with bicycles.
October 12, 2011

With more than 150 bicycle racks on the Tempe campus south of University Avenue, including recently installed racks just east of the Memorial Union; riders now have even more convenient locations to secure their bicycles.

“While the rack closest to your destination may be full there will be an opening on a rack a little further away,” said Jim Hardina, Arizona State University Police Department commander. “The only place to secure a bike is to a bike rack. When bikes are attached to trees, light poles, hand rails, etc., they interfere with university operations.”

Hardina offers additional insight about how securing bikes on a rack lessens the impact on university operations such as grounds keeping and maintenance:

• Bike racks are located on pavement or gravel to avoid landscape damage, which occurs through wear and compaction.

• It is impossible to mow well when a bike is locked to a tree or pole in the lawn.

• Bikes can get wet or damaged by sprinklers or irrigation when they are secured to trees on lawns.

• A bike lock damages tree bark and scratches the paint on poles.

• When locked to handrails, bicycles impede access or egress from buildings, especially to the disabled and sight impaired.

In addition to being mindful of university operations, Hardina also highlights the pedestrian-safety aspects of riding bicycles on campus as well as bicycle registration and rack security measures. 

“Two locks are better than one,” Hardina said. “Lock your bike with a sturdy U-lock to secure the frame and wheel to a bike rack. Then use a cable lock to secure the bike wheels and frame to a bike rack.”

The ASU Police Department encourages campus bicyclists to register their bicycles free at: Registration may deter theft and possibly aid in the recovery of a stolen bicycle.

When it comes to pedestrian safety on campus, Hardina also suggests that campus bicycle riders become familiar with Walk Your Wheels, the Tempe mall pedestrian safety campaign. Walk Your Wheels is led by the Undergraduate Student Government, and urges riders of bikes, skateboarders, or scooters to walk their wheels when approaching a dense crowd of students on campus.