Sometimes the most well-designed and useful objects are the ones you hardly notice at all. Case in point: bike bollards. You’ve probably encountered a bollard at one time or another (they look like heavy, squat posts), but bike bollards are an elevated version of these common structures that perform double duty by protecting buildings and pedestrians from cars while also providing a place for secure bicycle parking. Read on to learn more about these unsung heroes of urban design, and how they better streetscapes in their own quiet but effective way.
Most people have seen bollards around, and some might even realize that their main purpose is to prevent vehicles from coming up onto sidewalks and crashing into buildings or people. But bike bollards add increased functionality by also serving as a place for cyclists to lock up their bikes. In addition to improving safety and creating cyclist parking, they also increase the aesthetic appeal of a streetscape with a polished look that can boost the level of architectural interest in an otherwise bland area.
After Kaufman’s Bagel & Delicatessen, a family-owned specialty food business in Skokie, Illinois, was forced to shut down in 2011 due to a fire, the owners saw a chance to give the old facility a facelift. The community mandated that bicycle racks be installed in front of the store as part of the remodel, but co-owner Bette Dworkin wanted something a bit more structurally interesting and, since they’d had the issue in the past, something that could prevent a car from hitting the building.
“After a search on the internet I found Reliance Foundry,” said Dworkin. “They are a mix of a bollard, bike rack and a bit like chess pieces all rolled into one. I have always been completely satisfied with the product and the look it gives the exterior of the store.”
Reliance Foundry Bike Bollards
Reliance Foundry produces 17 styles of bike bollards in many different shapes and sizes. Made from sturdy, recycled and recyclable materials like steel and iron, they’re a smart investment for owners and municipalities hoping to protect their properties from car damage. Many of the models can also be installed over existing security posts, avoiding the need for costly removal. These can also be swapped out in the future when an updated look is desired.
To find out more about Reliance Foundry’s bike and other types of bollards, visit their website here.