Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Amtrak's Bike Parking Situation at 30th St Station Is Embarrassing

This Monday morning some of our staff went through 30th Street Station on their way to Harrisburg. We arrived by bicycle, because bicycling the first and last mile of your journey is ohmygosh the new black. Here is the bike parking situation we discovered:
Abandoned bicycles and scooters taking up precious rack space
Desperate parking times call for desperate parking measures
The bicycle parking at 30th Street Station falls under the auspices of Amtrak. Bicyclists frequenting the station have been dealing with significantly less bicycle parking ever since the station's 30th Street side went under construction in late 2012. Amtrak had told us back in November 2012 that temporary parking would be placed on the 29th Street side to compensate for the lost parking. But that never came to pass.

The slow accumulation of abandoned bicycles, and the lack of enforcement (or dedicated space elsewhere) for Vespa parking, has made the situation worse. Monday, we found the wave rack on the 29th Street side bearing computer paper notes warning bicyclists not to park there this week (with no explanation).
If the papers flew off in the wind, what would be the consequences for unknowingly parking a bicycle here?
Our emails to Amtrak have so far gone unanswered.

Amtrak's seeming indifference to passengers arriving by bicycle is making 30th Street Station look like a retrograde outlier compared to other transit hubs in Philadelphia and elsewhere in this country.

We asked Amtrak to remedy this situation by taking the following three actions:
  1. Tag and remove abandoned bicycles;
  2. Provide Vespas with their own parking area and enforce bike racks as bicycle-only parking;
  3. Add more temporary bike racks to accommodate the current severe unmet demand.
30th Street Station is too important of a transportation hub to so poorly accommodate travelers looking to begin or end their longer journeys on bicycle.

3 comments:

Philly Bicycle Journal said...

The fact that Amtrak has no bike parking at 30th St should come as no surprise given the barriers that they have put in place to keep bikes off of trains.

For more details check out "Leave the Driving to Us" on the Philadelphia Bicycle Journal.

andrewlevitt said...

Thanks guys for a timely post. University District had someone stationed there today to direct me to the 29th-St side parking, so at least that. Still lots of bikes on temporary parking poles and otherwise strewn around.

Peter said...

I'd be willing to pay about $5/day for secure parking at the station