The Guide to Bike Rooms from The Park and Facilities Catalog is a handy overview on how to create an attractive indoor bike storage area.
Why create a bike room in an apartment or office building?
According to a recent survey of people in the multi-family construction business, right now bike rooms are a hot amenity.
Multifamily Design and Construction recently surveyed architects, developers, property owners, and contractors to determine their take on amenities.
As you might know, providing cool, appealing new amenities is a popular trend right now in the apartment business.
Bike rooms, spas, billiards rooms, fire pits, cabanas, community gardens, video rooms, wine, coffee or juice bars and even concierge services are now the rage.
The competition to offer these extra features has gotten so intense, some experts are referring to them as “amenity wars.”
Makes sense. Many Millennials still prefer to rent. And if they wanted to buy, it’s difficult because many lower-priced homes have already been snapped up.
Therefore, the pool of renters out there is enormous. Hence, the rise of marketing amenities as a way to attracts those new tenants.
Plus, renters love these extras.
Bike rooms top list of conveniences
According to the survey, when asked to list their Top 10 Convenience Services, secure bicycle storage was No. 1. Almost 72% said their designs or finished buildings included bike rooms. That number was up from 66.5% in 2017 when those respondents said they listed bike storage as a service they provide.
That also makes sense.
Millennials (and a growing number of urban dwellers in general) love their bicycles.
They prefer pedaling to get around instead of driving. They also would rather cycle to work than drive.
According to the League of American Bicyclists, in a 10-year period, there was more than a 47% increase in the number of bicycle commuters in major cities in the US.
The other convenience-related amenities below bike rooms were package delivery, concierge service, transit access, dry cleaning/ laundry service, bicycle repair/maintenance, Uber/Lyft waiting areas, beauty services, bicycle-sharing services and convenience stores in the complex.
As you can see, there were three bike-related amenities on the top ten list for conveniences. As we said, there’s a reason for this. Millennials like to bike.
In the report, 25.7% of those surveyed said they offer Bicycle Repair and Maintenance services.
Another 14.7% said they arranged for bicycle-sharing services. (One apartment complex offered initial renters a free premium bicycle).
Key elements of a bike room
If you read the Guide to Bike Rooms from The Park and Facilities Catalog, there are a variety of products built specifically for indoor bicycle storage.
Here is a breakdown:
- Wall-mount Bike Racks: this product is the most popular for indoor bike storage. Wall-mounted bike racks are a space saver. Two bicycles attached to a bike rack will typically take up 84 inches. But when hanging from a vertical bike rack, bikes only require about 40 inches of space. Big savings on square footage. By positioning that bike on the wall, you can reduce the space you will need by 50%. In addition, the wall-mount bike racks require less aisle clearance. Wall mount or freestanding bike racks only need about 48 inches of aisle space for a cyclist to hang their bicycle. For standard bike racks indoors, the aisle space needed is about 60 inches. Another savings by going vertical. The bike racks can also be ordered with extended metal locking arms. This allows the cyclists to lock their bicycle securely with three points of contact – the tire, frame and the locking arm itself. That configuration provides for the use of a sturdy metal U-lock, the type of security recommended by most experts.
- Freestanding Bike Racks: if you are unable to mount bike racks to a wall, freestanding bike racks are the next option. These vertical bike racks use the same components as a wall-mount rack but are built with upright steel square tubes and crossbars to hold the bicycles in an upright position with a small footprint.
- Double-Decker Bike Racks: another option is to use double-decker bike racks where the bicycles are stacked horizontally one on top of the other. These freestanding bike racks come with a wheel tray where a bicycle can easily be loaded onto the rack and then guided to the top row. Again, this saves space as it doubles the number of bicycles that can be parked.
- Bike Lockers: bike storage lockers are becoming a more popular option for bicycle storage. With a bike locker, the bicycle is completed enclosed in a secure, steel box. Some apartments or municipalities charge a monthly fee for this type of high-security storage. For cyclists with expensive bicycles costing thousands of dollars, this is a desirable amenity for them.
The added appeal of bike repair stations
Bike Repair Stations: one quick way to immediately add practical value to a bike room and a bit of pizzazz is to install a handy bike repair station. These bike repair stations are like having a mini-bicycle repair shop in your building and are an appealing amenity for cyclists.
The bike repair stations can be equipped with:
- Tools – A handy set of tools attached by a secure aircraft-grade cable. Those tools can be used to make minor adjustments or to tighten different parts of the bicycles. They would include screwdrivers, wrenches, hex key sets and other items required for most bicycle tune-ups.
- Bicycle pump – nothing is more frustrating for a cyclist than to get ready to ride and see their bike tires need air. These handy bike pumps attached to the bike repair stations can remedy that situation. Some even come with air pressure gauges.
- Wheel chocks – these bars hold a bicycle off the ground and make it easier for a cyclist to make adjustments.
Other amenities you can add include:
- Metal Benches – provide a place for cyclists to sit if they need to change their shoes.
- Lockers – provide a place for cyclists to hang jackets or change clothes.
- Showers – yes, some facilities, such as office buildings, even offer showers so cyclists can cool off and change.
The great advantage of adding a bike room as an amenity is the relatively low cost. Installing a few wall-mount bike racks is certainly less expensive than adding a spa or pool.
One thing is for certain when it comes to amenities and younger tenants – bicycles are popular.
But the competition is heating up.
At the City Tower apartment building in New York City for example, they promote their bike room on the 19th floor with a view. How’s that for an amenity that will excite cyclists?
Whatever your plans, be sure to check out our Guide for Bike Rooms.
The Park and Facilities Catalog also offers a FREE service where our designers will help create sample layouts for the space that is available. Just give us the dimensions of the area and we’ll design a room with maximum bike density.