Office Workers in The City of London are increasingly taking to 2 wheels for their daily commute into work. Whether last year’s Olympics really did have an effect or the fact that the sun has now finally made an appearance may all be something to do with it but demand for bike parking spaces is outstripping supply amongst the Square Mile Offices.
There aren’t an abundance of building projects in the City Of London at present for obvious reasons, but one of the most iconic is 20 Fenchurch Street where the so called ‘Walkie Talkie’ building has seen 50% of the Office Space pre-let but 100% of the bike parking spaces let by future tenants. The City has had fairly robust rules since 2002 regarding new office buildings with new builds needing to provide a minimum of 1 parking space per 250 square metres. This has resulted in a steady increase of available bike parking spaces in the last few years with nearly 7000 spaces added since 2008. The City of London estimates it has 20,000 off-street bike parking spaces amongst its many Offices, which works out at 1 bike space per 18 workers in the Square Mile.
There are plans to increase this capacity even further in the near future. The new plan, to be approved in 2014, plans a minimum requirement of one bike parking space per 125 square metres, double the current limit. Before all the cyclists break out the water bottle with a celebratory squirt, The City of Westminster already has a policy in place to provide 1 space per 125 and has done since 2007. Whilst the City of London’s move is welcomed, there is clearly a long way to go yet.
Cambridge, a biking hotspot where you’re more likely to be mown down by a Librarian or Student with a shopper than you are by a mum in Chelsea with a Range Rover, insists on a staggering 1 bike space per 30 square metres and additionally must provide decent visitor bike parking.
What do you think, what more can Councils and Office Companies do for ‘Commuters on 2 wheels?’