I’m taking that as a pretty resounding no from women who made up 98% of respondents. I was also struck by how many responses used the same words in their explanations for why they would not feel comfortable using this bike station. Many GFPs pointed out that there was only one exit, and that there was no guard. The word “trapped” also came up a lot as did “enclosed”, “confined”, “caged” and “unsafe”.
So, GFP Carmit, who first asked the question, I think we can take it that you were right and your twitter respondent was wrong. No, women do not on the whole feel safe using these stations and so no it isn’t great design.
And that’s before we get to, as several GFPs pointed out, these bike stores requiring the upper body strength needed to park your bike upright 🙄. Here is a very good sum-up of the problem from GFP Iris:
I have another bicycle-storage-related problem though. I think that bike stores are often designed for men, in that they often require you to hoist your bike up. And women are smaller, less muscly and often have heavier and more clunky bikes than men, with baskets and stuff.
I really struggle with those vertical bike stores a lot, and I know my friends do, too, sometimes both their and other people’s bicycles fall on them when they try to mount them. And one of my friends would like a bicycle with a basket for her puppy, but she is not getting one because this kind of bike would be too heavy and she could not use the storage on her own, and that’s both at work and at her block of flats. I think that’s very wrong. I think there should be comfortable and safe bike parking for women. Especially I know even vertical parking can be better. The fast ferry to Isle of Wight has a more comfy bike parking mechanism (photo attached). But also if we have so much car parking, why can’t we just have more horizontal space for bicycle parking?