Guernsey Press

Green bike park shaped like a car not to everyone’s taste

A NEW bike rack is aiming to get islanders to think how many bikes they can fit into one car parking space.

Electric bike rider Mark Bisson parks his machine. He is a big fan of the new cycle hoops in Hirzel Street. (Picture by Luke Le Prevost, 31942337)

But the new green feature at the top of Hirzel Street has split islanders. Not everyone is loving the design.

There are already seven hoops at the Sunken Gardens, but these are often full. The new bike rack, which is taking up what was a 30-minute car parking spot, adds five more to the area.

Traffic & Highway Services lead officer Colin Le Page said it was trying to install more stands to meet the needs of an ever-increasing number of cyclists.

‘The number of bicycles being parked by the Sunken Gardens regularly exceeds the rack spaces available creating an obvious need for more cycle parking in the area,’ he said.

‘To address this demand, the temporary bike port has been installed on a trial basis to allow evaluation of its use, prior to consideration for permanent cycle parking, which would then require planning consent.’

However many people have queried the unusual design.

‘The car-shaped design was chosen as it highlights that up to 10 cycles can park in the same space that would be occupied by one vehicle,’ he said.

St Peter Port constable Zoe Lihou welcomed the new street furniture.

‘It’s an opportunity to promote environment and health so islanders can take action where they can,’ she said.

Hirzel Street is part of the St Peter Port conservation area, which means new developments need to be considered carefully.

The design of the rack in the shape of a bright green car saw some saying it looks out of place.

Lisa Upham, who works at Appleby, is planning on buying an electric bike but she said the installation of the bike park detracted from its positive message.

‘I think it’s an excellent idea that’s been poorly executed. The design is a bit ugly and it just looks like its been plonked down with no thought,’ she said.

Childcare worker Mark Bisson uses his electric bike as his primary mode of transport. He disagreed and felt the bright colour was a nice touch.

‘I think it’s pretty cool and eye-catching. It’s a nightmare travelling in Town and around the Sunken Garden, so it’s good to have more spaces.

Another cyclist, who wished to stay anonymous, said she rode her bike into Town regularly and felt it was effort spent in the

wrong place.

‘I’d be much happier with the addition of more simple racks like the ones already in place. A snazzy design won’t bring more people to the cause – in fact it could even take away from it,’ she said.

THS said the cost of purchase, delivery, storage and installation of the rack was approximately £4,800.