With more and more commuters turning to bicycles in cities across the world, bike parking has become a critical component in any forward-looking urban planning discussions. Over in Japan, however, one company has come up with a solution that can accommodate hundreds of cyclists without taking up much space or creating an army of urban eyesores/sidewalk hogs made up of bright blue Citi/Divvy bikes. Their solution: put the bicycle parking underground.
Giken’s innovative program was first announced back in 2009, and it’s been in operation since at least 2011.
The Japanese firm’s innovative design is called, officially, “the Eco-Cycle Underground Park”, and was designed around a concept that translates, more or less, into “Culture Above Ground, Function Underground”.
To make the bike parking machine go, the user types in a code and an automated bike caddy whisks his or her bike on its way to underground safety, out of sight, and with a minimal above-ground footprint (carbon or otherwise).
You can see the system in action in the video, below, presented by Culture Japan host, Danny Choo, then let us know what you think of Giken’s underground bike parking solution in the comments section at the bottom of the page. Enjoy!