05 April 2010

The Rack Enquiry: Why top deck is best at Euston

The two-tier parking racks, installed last year at Euston station, are proving popular. All the undercover spaces, on both conventional racks and two-tier units, were taken (right) when I dropped in the other day.

(I'd cycled up to the station to sort out a ticket query, because it was faster than waiting at home on hold to Virgin Trains' call centre in India.)

The other two-tier rack nearby, a half-uncovered one, was only half-full (right). That wasn't a surprise given the Easter monsoons. But what puzzled me was why everyone had chosen the top tier to park their bikes. When they were installed, I'd thought the top would be avoided as too cumbersome.

Ah - so that's the answer (right). On the downstairs rack was this lone wheel, the snapped cable serving as fossil evidence of what else was once there. Somewhere in a crackhouse council flat, a bike-torso is now doubtless stacked up with other looted ironmongery.

Both decks offer the same fastening possibilities: a hinged kind of metal half-trombone shape that you can D-lock your frame and back wheel to. But presumably the top deck is that bit more awkward for thieves - and conspicuous, given the manoeuvring necessary to get access to the bike.

And when stealing a bike, time is clearly of the essence. You don't see many cycle thieves with the patience to stay on hold to Virgin Trains' ticket enquiries phone line.

1 comment:

  1. Yer they have install this type of rack in Woking, but people seem to prefer the Sheffield stands nearby instead. I think they look a mess.