Rubbish Infrastructure of the Month 3: Job Centre Bike Rack

Cycling infrastructure broadly falls into two categories: ‘stuff that you use to go somewhere’ and ‘stuff that you use when you arrive’. Our first two editions of Rubbish Infrastructure of the Month focused on the former. This month we will focus on an example of the latter, the 10 bike racks installed outside the job centre in 1995.

These were always a very costly and complicated solution. They cannot be used by those who haven’t got the correct coin (EFTAG believes this was a 20 pence piece), nor can they be used in conjunction with the rider’s own lock.

As you can see here, the groove in the ground is prone to filling up with litter and needs regular cleaning to remain functional.

For many years now this rack has been derelict. It cannot be used for its intended purpose. Of the 10 spaces, 7 are locked and 3 are unlocked with not a single key between them.

The whole unit is badly corroded and looks like it probably wouldn’t work, even if the keys were present. The rack is 25 years old now, but it ceased to be functional a long time ago. There used to be another in the vicinity of the old Loughton Swimming Pool, that is long gone.

A row of Sheffield Stands would have been a much better solution at the time and would be a much better solution today. EFTAG would dearly like to see Epping Forest District Council remove this eyesore and replace it with something fit for purpose.

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