In GM’s very first substantive post, he discussed the proposal by CycleLife at 3255 Water St. to eliminate one parking space outside its doors and replace it with bike racks for 40 bikes.
Its been almost eleven months, and there’s still no change to the street layout. GM contacted CycleLife to see whether the plan was still alive.
It turns out that the plans are still moving forward. According to Steve Anderson, CycleLife’s Director of Member Services, the final rack designs are still being reviewed by two District agencies. Despite the bureaucratic delay, Anderson does not foresee any impediment to the plan finally coming to fruition. They should know for sure by November.
As GM discussed way back when, this is a great proposal for Georgetown. One street parking spot is immaterial to the thousands of people who come to Georgetown each day. Once construction to the final phase of the Georgetown waterfront comes to an end, having establishments like CycleLife down by the park will be a boon to the completed park and those that would like to bike there.
Is 2 > 40?
CycleLife is a bikeshop-cum-gym-cum-smoothie bar that recently opened up on Water St. in lower Georgetown. The owners of the new two floor complex hope to “forever rearrange the landscape of how recreational cycling and physical fitness is viewed.” The company’s press release goes on to explain:
CycleLife is a 2-story, 12,000 square foot facility on the shore of the Potomac River in the historic Georgetown area of Washington D.C. which brings under one roof the most complete array of services, equipment and amenities ever put together, and delivers them to cyclists with a level of customer service that is closer to a luxury European resort than a Main Street bike store.
In all honesty, GM is a little confused exactly what niche CycleLife fits into. It appears not to compete directly with the traditional bike stores like Big Wheel Bikes or Revolution Cycles, nor is it a traditional gym. Regardless, the addition of a new bike store lifestyle center is a good thing.
But there’s more.
The owners of CycleLife have requested from the District that the two parking spots directly in front of their store be removed so that they can install bike racks instead. They plan to provide up to forty spots for bikes. Additionally, they plan to provide video surveillance of the bike racks and to provide basic bike maintenance services. DDOT is currently reviewing their application. On December 2, the owners presented their application to the ANC and a measure supporting their application was approved unanimously.
The Georgetown Metropolitan strongly supports this application. Firstly, it’s a simple matter of mathematics. Forty is greater than two. Granted, there are places throughout Georgetown to which a bike can be locked; however, this is merely an adequate situation. For too long bike riders and pedestrians have had to settle for merely adequate if it means a slight marginal gain to car drivers. Secondly, there are plenty of parking garages in that vicinity. There are no less than five garages on K/Water St. alone. There is no parking shortage in Georgetown, there is only a cheap parking shortage. Substituting excellent bike parking that can serve up to forty people for two cheap parking spots is a no brainer.
Finally, this shop is located pretty much on the south terminus of the Capital Crescent Trail. If its facilities can encourage more people who live along the CCT to ride a bike to Georgetown instead of driving, that’ll make up for two paring spots in no time.