Toronto - bike parking

(updated October 18, 2018)

existing City of Toronto guidelines

guidelines from other cities

Toronto's multi-rack design (see B1) does not meet any of these criteria. Click on the city link for their complete guidelines.

2017 - review of bike parking "racks" located on public property

A1 - ring and post

4th and latest generation "ring and post" - Sumach & Dundas

A1 - ring and post

a few have been painted - Dundas & Euclid

A1 - ring and post

poor installation: rings are spaced too widely (4 feet apart), so end rings are too close to building/stairs, which means only 1 side of bike ring can be used - Shuter & Dalhousie

A1 - ring and post

all versions of bike ring suseptible to bending (by trucks/cars which drive up onto sidewalk) - Queen & Sackville

A1 - ring and post

initial version of bike ring susseptible to ring being broken off by vandal/bike thief - Park Road & Bloor

A2 - ring and post

stainless steel - King & Frederick

A3 - ring and post

limited number of these along Yonge, between Wellesley and King (Yonge BIA ?); can only lock to 1 side (since ring attached to thick pole) - Yonge & Richmond

A4 - ring and post

variant of bike ring (ring welded onto post); limited number on Wellington, Yonge, Front (in vicinity of Brookfield Place) - Yonge & Wellington

A5 - ring

vertical "leg" welded onto ring; may be suseptible to breaking (see parabola, below); light-weight steel (bike rack easily cut?) - Sherbourne & Lakeshore, also used at King & Widmer, Bay & St. Joseph

B1 - multi-rack

poor design: risk that bike wheel gets bent - see next photo; only 1 contact point (can only lock frame and 1 wheel to rack); "vertically staggered bike rack to prevent pedal and handlebar tangles when full", but accomodates fewer than 8 bikes if adjacent bike has wide baskets/carriers; this design used for some on-street corrals; Parks & Rec plans to implement this same bike rack design in 2017-18 - King & John

B1 - multi-rack

bike stand rests against bike wheel only (risk that bike wheel gets bent)

B1 - multi-rack

can only lock both wheels when bike locked to end of rack

B2 - angled multi-rack

minor differences from previous design:angled, so bikes take up less depth on the sidewalk; no "trough" for bike wheel, so adjacent spots not vertically staggered; bike stand rests against bike wheel only (risk that bike wheel gets bent) - Ossington & Bloor

B2 - angled multi-rack

bike stand rests against bike wheel only (risk that bike wheel gets bent)

B3 - on-street corral

only 1 contact point (can only lock frame and 1 wheel to rack) - Harbord & Euclid

C1 - angled "wave"

- Christie & Bloor

C2 - short angled "wave"

too short to permit locking both wheels with U locks - Queen & Cowan

D1 - triple inverted U

in theory could accomodate 3 bikes (difficult to fit bike peadals inside "middle" spot); light-weight steel (bike rack easily cut?) - Sackville & Shuter

D2- inverted U

base welded onto parabola; may be suseptible to breaking (see next photo); light-weight steel (bike rack easily cut) - Elm & Elizabeth

D2- inverted U

broken weld at base of parabola bike rack shown in previous photo, likely due to vandalism (once weld broken on both sides, bike easily stolen)

E1- closed inverted U

Yonge BIA - Yonge & Grosvenor

E1- closed inverted U

poor installation: rack located too close to garden curb, making it difficult to lock both wheels; rack bolted to pavement (may become loose eventually) - Bay & Dundas

E1- closed inverted U

poor installation: rack installed sideways, so does not provide two points of contact with bike - Yonge & Gould

E2- closed inverted U

poor design: only 1 contact point (can only lock frame and 1 wheel to rack), thickness of post makes it difficult to use U lock, Bloor-Yorkville BIA - Church & Bloor

F1 - triangle

only 1 contact point (can only lock frame and 1 wheel to rack) - King & John

F1 - triangle

can only lock both wheels when bike locked to end of rack

G - artistic

thickness of cast metal bike rack makes it difficult to use U lock - Queen & Cowan

G - artistic

thickness of cast metal bike rack makes it difficult to use U lock

H - "wheel bender"

bike stand rests against bike wheel only (risk that bike wheel gets bent), difficult to lock frame to bike rack - Yonge & St. Mary

high capacity installations

A1 - ring and post

4 rings, each 2 feet apart: 1 feet per bike (when parked on both sides of ring) - Sackville & Dundas

A1 - ring and post

4 rings, each 3 feet apart: 1.5 feet per bike - Sumach & Dundas

B1 - multi-rack

accomodates 5 bikes, 6.5 feet long: 1.34 feet per bike - New City Hall

E1- closed inverted U

each 2 feet apart: 1 feet per bike - Albert & Bay

Requests for New Bicycle Locking Rings

The City of Toronto installs bicycle locking rings on public right-of-way which has a minimum pedestrian clearway width of 2.5 metres. Locations suggested by the public will be considered, however the City reserves the right to vet all submissions. For your information, it will take approximately one year upon request to installation, if deemed feasible. Bicycle locking rings which are approved are installed free of charge.

Removal of Abandoned Bikes

Cyclists should be aware that rusty and damaged bicycles which have been left on bicycle locking rings may be tagged for removal. Once a bicycle has been tagged, its owner has 7 days to remove it. Solid Waste will remove the bicycles and locks permanently in order to clear the public right-of-way and maintain availability of short-term bicycle parking.

No time limit on use of bike rings

A 24 hour limit for using a bike ring seems reasonable, and such a restriction existed until 2012, when an exemption was made - see page 35 (section 743-9 P, And R) of this PDF: Toronto Municipal Code, Chapter 743, Use of Streets And Sidewalks. It is questionable whether "bike storage" is an appropriate use of bike rings. In many areas of downtown, bike rings are in short supply and permitting "bike storage" (parking for several days) at bike rings makes it even less likely that the city can come close to satisfying peak demand for short term parking. Visually, it's difficult to distinguish between long-term "bike storage" and an abandoned bike, and so currently, many abandoned bikes remain at bike rings for 6-12 months before someone requests removal.

References