Friday, September 30, 2011

Bike Walk Lincoln Park meeting on October 4th

Join Bike Walk Lincoln Park to help keep our neighborhood's streets safe and beautiful for pedestrians and bicyclists.
We're holding an open meeting on Tuesday, October 4th for the community, and welcome everyone to attend.

Bike Walk Lincoln Park is a community group that was formed in June 2011, in conjunction with the Active Transportation Alliance as well as Alderman Michele Smith's office, to work on issues of interest to anyone who walks or bikes in the 43rd ward. We'll focus on safety for all users of the street, because that's paramount to making our streets and sidewalks pleasant for everyone.

We already have a list of projects we'd like to tackle, but we want to hear your ideas, and we want to work with you to make them all become a reality.

WHEN:  Tuesday, October 4th, 2011 at 7:00 pm

WHERE:  Lincoln Park Library Community Room -- 1150 W. Fullerton -- Fullerton and Racine

Please RSVP to let us know to expect you, or just come at the last minute. E-mail Michelle Stenzel at to RSVP.

If you can't make it to the meeting but would like to get involved, e-mail us to get on the mailing list or to share your suggestions. We look forward to meeting you!

* Addendum on October 5, 2011: A summary of the meeting can be found here

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Come play in the street!

State Street in the heart of the Loop doesn't seem like a great place to have a hula hoop contest, does it? But on Saturday, October 1, there won't be any cars on the street, and plenty of hula hoops. And yoga mats, and skateboards, and a dunk tank, and people walking around, having fun.

State Street in Chicago's Loop will be the site of the city's first "Open Streets" event. (Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
During Open Streets on State Street, that great street will be closed to motorized traffic from Van Buren Street to Lake Street, and instead taken over completely by people strolling, playing four square, watching break dance demonstrations, and just plain relaxing. 

It's a free event (click here for the official website), open from 10:00 am until 3:00 pm, and will provide Chicagoans a way to experience the Loop in a completely new way. There will be something for everyone, from an Imagination Station playground for little tykes, to competitive races for adults in hotly contested events like three-legged races. We're already practicing riding our bikes at a snail's pace so we can dominate in the competition to see who can ride their bike the slowest.

There will be pop up performance classic Broadway hits by Broadway in Chicago Players, under the Oriental Theater marquee. You can shoot hoops with members of the DePaul University men's and women's basketball teams, or test your heart health with a jump rope challenge.

On October 1st, this man's activity will be transformed from "jaywalking" to "just walking".
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
Many other cities have done these, and the nature of them seem to be linked to how much space is blocked off. Many South American cities have cyclovias, like the one in Bogota, Colombia, in which 75 miles of city streets are closed off to motorized vehicles one day every weekend, making them popular for bicycling. Some are hybrids, like New York's Manhattan Summer Street events, which closes off four miles of Park Avenue for recreation, with periodic rest stops for activities like improv workshops and salsa lessons.

Summer Streets event in New York City. (Photo: Jeff Pranton on Streetsblog)
Other city's events are just a few blocks long, and so are more conducive to sitting, strolling, and letting the kids play. Since this State Street event will be on a very wide street but only seven blocks long, don't expect to get a good workout on two wheels (although there will be a bike valet and bike rentals available). Hopefully there will be ueber-cute tykes on tricycles and training wheels, though. We're hoping there will be "pop up lawns" with chairs to sit in. Maybe we'll bring chalk and start a sidewalk mural.

This temporary lawn in London even had a pop up library included. (Photo seen on The Londonist)
But really, we're just looking forward to the unique feeling of ambling down the middle of State Street with our dogs, and our kids, without worrying about cars. At least for a few hours.

The rain is clearing out and the forecast for Saturday is sunny and mild, so we'll see you on State Street!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Bike Share Coming Soon to a Corner Near You

This week, Chicago put out its request for proposals for vendors to create Chicago’s first large-scale bike-share system. The city is going big: They’re planning to install 3,000 bikes at 300 stations by next summer, with another 2,000 bikes and 200 stations possible by 2014. Read the Tribune's coverage of the announcement here.
B-Cycle rack at the Notebaert Nature Museum in Lincoln Park.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
The first thing you should know about bike share systems is that they are NOT geared toward tourists, but to people who live and work in Chicago. The system is designed to encourage people to use them for short trips of half an hour or less, for commutes to work, school, shopping, or for short recreational rides. The RFP states as its very first point that the purpose of the system is to enhance the city’s public transit system by providing bikes to complete the first or last leg of a trip. 

So it’s meant to be another mode of transportation, instead of or in addition to walking, riding the bus, or taking the El. Although visitors to Chicago are welcome to use the system, it’s envisioned that they’ll only be a small portion of users.

Users in bike-share systems can typically become members for periods of one day, a month, or a year. The pricing structure in Chicago is yet to be determined, but in other cities, the prices run about $5 for daily membership, $25 for a month, or $75 for annual.
Bike share terminals typically have information for users about bike routes and bicycling safety.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
The stations will have terminals that will accept credit cards, so you can join on the spot, and be on your shared bike within a few minutes. Once you have your membership, you can undock a bike and take it for half an hour for no additional charge. As long as you continue to redock the bike at other stations within half an hour, you can take unlimited rides during your chosen membership period for free. 

If you do keep a bike out more than half an hour, additional fees are added on, typically at increasing rates like $1.50 for the next half an hour, $3.00 for the half an hour after that, and $6.00 for every subsequent half an hour. This pricing structure encourages hub to hub riding, with users returning the bikes to the system at their destination, so another member can make use of it.

Other American cities like Washington DC (Capital Bikeshare), Minneapolis (Nice Ride) and Boston (Hubway) have had bike shares in place with good success. (If you’re familiar with any of those cities, it’s fun to check out their maps to get an idea where their stations are located, and at what level of density.) Boston’s program just launched in late July 2011 with 60 stations and 600 bikes, and by August had already sold 2,300 annual memberships, when the original goal of the planners was to hit 2,000 members by Thanksgiving. 

Where will Chicago’s bike share stations be located? Good news for Lincoln Parkers: We’re predicting they’ll be everywhere in our neighborhood, kind of like Starbucks. The RFP says that the stations will be placed in areas that are already popular for bicycling, with high transit use, and dense commercial and residential development. Check, check, check and check. We’ve got two much-used El lines, high density living, Lincoln Park Zoo, DePaul University, commercial centers, restaurants, shopping and theater galore. 
Plenty of room for bike share users on streets in the Loop, on the Madison bike lane.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
Other points to note:
  • The bikes themselves are typically on the heavy side, have height-adjustable seats, upright riding position, headlights, basket, and fenders. 
  • Chicago is requiring that the bikes have three speeds and are encouraging five speeds. 
  • The city is open to a 12-month system or seasonal (usually halting operations in winter).
  • They are also open to a 24/7 system or one that shuts down at night. (Really? Please no shut down at night. We’re not in Des Moines here.)

The RFP also mentions the tantalizing fact that the stations should be configurable to add on other vehicle share systems, like motor scooter sharing! Now THAT would be fun, too. Very Roman Holiday.

You may be thinking, this is all good for others, but I already own a bike and therefore don’t have any use for bike-share. But think of the level of flexibility this could bring: Maybe you typically commute downtown by bike, but bus it when there’s any threat of rain. If you’re a bike share member, you could grab a bike, ride it to work while it’s nice out, and then at 5:00 pm decide which way to get home. 

We’re very excited by this plan. It will be a game-changer for the streets of our city, in a positive way. Seeing thousands of ordinary Chicagoans using bicycles for transportation will make cycling be perceived as mainstream and, well, ordinary, and not as something only done by children, or sweaty athletes on the lakefront trail. 
Seeing ordinary people in the Loop riding for transportation will become a common sight.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
People will use these bikes to get from Union Station to their jobs in Streeterville, to go from Old Town to Wrigley Field for a game, or to go to dinner with friends. Motorists will be much more accustomed to seeing bikes on the streets, and will become more comfortable sharing the road. Riding bikes to get somewhere will seem as normal as taking the El. 

We’ll be signing up for bike sharing as soon as it launches. How about you?

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Make Clark a Liveable Street!

Members of Bike Walk Lincoln Park are starting to advocate for improvements in the 43rd ward to help make walking and biking safer and more pleasant! Alderman Michele Smith is also very concerned about safety issues, and shares our enthusiasm for making improvements. 

One of the first projects we'll focus on is one that we used to kick off this blog: improving Clark Street from North Avenue to Armitage. In another post, we compared crossing Clark Street to playing the game of Frogger.

Four wide lanes of auto traffic on Clark Street at the Lincoln Avenue intersection.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
Why make any changes? The southeast corner of the Lincoln Park neighborhood is one of the most walkable areas of the city, and yet this half-mile section of Clark Street is not friendly to anything but motorized traffic.

If you've ever walked or biked this stretch, you know already that some of the current problems include:
  • Wide lanes of car traffic moving at speeds in excess of the speed limit
  • Poorly marked pedestrian crossings that span six lanes of street with no safe haven
  • Long distances between safe crosswalks
  • Absence of bike lanes means bicyclists are squeezed between fast-moving cars and parked cars
  • Excessive noise from fast-moving cars is unpleasant and makes it hard to enjoy parks and restaurants
  • Lack of wayfinding or historic signage and nowhere to sit in the park
Pedestrians at Clark and Wisconsin crossing six lanes of street with no safe haven.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
What can be done to improve?
  • Reduce moving lanes for motorized traffic from four lanes to two
  • Install protected bike lanes
  • Widen the east sidewalk
  • Install well-marked pedestrian crossings and new crosswalks where needed
  • Add signage, landscaping and benches

What will the result be?
  • Traffic calmed to safer speeds
  • Less traffic noise
  • Easier and safer for pedestrians to cross the street along the entire half-mile stretch
  • Safe bike route for bicyclists of all abilities
  • Easier for neighbors and visitors to enjoy existing parks, plazas, and restaurants
  • Clark Street from North Avenue to Armitage Avene becomes a pleasure, not a hazard!
This lovely park at Clark and Wisconsin will be more enjoyable when traffic noise is reduced.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
The points listed above are only excerpts from our full list of ideas.

You can read the full details on our information sheet about the project here.

And take a look at our visual presentation of Clark Street as it is currently, and our ideas for changes.

We'll be holding a public meeting in the near future open to all to share ideas and discuss the proposal. Keep checking this blog for more information, or e-mail us at to join our mailing list. Feel free to leave your comments and suggestions below! We welcome your input.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Signs of progress

There have been some small but encouraging changes happening lately that you may want to know about.

First, we called the attention to our friends at the Chicago Department of Transportation to the fact that part of their website was not reflecting the new law requiring motorists to STOP for pedestrians in a crosswalk. After we discussed it in this post and reached out to them, we're happy to report that they've updated their page, which you can view here.

Specifically, some of the updated wording now says,
If oncoming drivers don’t stop for the pedestrian—as required by law—the vehicle will be pulled over by a police spotter further down the street.
Thanks, CDOT!

Portable sign on Wells Street reminds motorists it's state law in Illinois to "Stop for Pedestrians Within Crosswalk". (Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)

In a related item, Lincoln Park commuters to the Loop who take Wells Street may have noticed these fantastic new signs on Wells south of Division Street, by Walter Payton High School. They are in the middle of the crosswalk but out of the way of motorized traffic, and they clearly remind motorists to STOP for pedestrians within the crosswalk.

Pedestrian crosswalk sign at 1100 North Wells, by Walter Payton College Prep.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)

We've noticed that the signs are on wheels, and only out during the day time, so perhaps the Payton operations staff puts them out and takes them in on school days? Whatever the method is, this is a great tool to use to calm traffic and make the street safer for pedestrians. We noticed that vehicle drivers slow down considerably when they see the sign, whether there are pedestrians present or not. 

We need more of these, all over! Especially since they seem to be portable, we're envisioning them placed on Stockton Street on busy summer weekends with all the families crossing over to the zoo and beach area. 

Also, they could be placed periodically on streets like Clark, Armitage, Webster, and others, just to start acclimating drivers to the fact that they indeed have to STOP for pedestrians in a crosswalk. Maybe individual merchants can take responsibility for a sign and make it part of their routine to place the sign in the morning and take it in at closing.


New markings extending the Wells bike lane through the intersection at Superior Street.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
Finally, bicycle commuters on Wells Street may have noticed that as part of finishing the street surfacing project near Chicago Avenue, bike lanes have been striped all the way through the intersections! This is a great way to add to the visibility of bike lanes and bicyclists, giving motorists a visual clue that there are other users of the street that they need to be aware of.

The Wells Street bike lane on the east side now extends through the span of the intersection at Chicago Avenue.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
These cross-intersection bike lanes were added at the large intersection of Chicago and Wells, as well as the smaller side-street meeting point of Superior and Wells.

It would be wonderful if this were the new standard for bike lanes in Chicago. Details like this matter, and changes like this give us hope for a safer city for all of us. We're seeing all the great improvements, CDOT: Keep it up!

Have you noticed any other signs of hope for bicyclists and pedestrians in your neighborhood?

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

What cyclists on sidewalks are telling us

This bicyclist chose to use the sidewalk along Clark near Wisconsin Street, where there is no bike lane.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park) 
We see people riding bicycles on the sidewalks in Chicago a lot. For anyone age 12 years or older, this is illegal activity. No matter how slowly they're riding, their combined weight and velocity can cause serious injury to pedestrians. Signs on Sheridan Road warn that violators are subject to a $250 fine, "temporary disabling of bicycle" and arrest. (Disabling their bikes and arrest? Yet a taxi driver who runs into an elderly woman in a crosswalk and causes her death on this same street simply receives two tickets, see our prior post on this.)

In any case, with the exception of shared-use paths like the Lakefront Trail, bicyclists are supposed to ride on the street. They certainly have the right to be there, but they're not often welcomed. Chicago has about 5,000 miles of roads but only 125 miles with markedbike lanes. Some motor vehicle drivers seem surprised, if not outright hostile, when they see bike riders on the asphalt next to them.

What are the law-breaker cyclists telling us when spurn the road? They're telling us they've done a mental calculation involving the speed of the motor vehicles, the lack of space for bikes, and the risk of getting doored, and said, no thanks: I'll take the sidewalk, and stay alive.

They're telling us we need more safe bike lanes. 

Chicago doesn't yet have a network of bikeways that the average bicyclist can use. The average bicyclist. Not the daredevil in skinny jeans on a fixie with no brakes. The average bicyclist. Me, you, your next-door neighbor, and your Aunt Jean visiting from Rockford. 

It's difficult for adults and children to ride bicycles together in Chicago without breaking the law.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
Families who want to ride their bikes face a dilemma. When a child under 12 years old rides on the sidewalk, is the accompanying adult really expected to ride on the street, on the other side of trees, planter boxes and a solid wall of parked SUVs? According to our ordinances, the answer is yes.

Tourists on rental bikes mix it up with pedestrians on the sidewalk along Michigan Avenue.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
Increasingly, the lack of infrastructure is becoming a problem for a growing number of tourists, who rent bikes and have a reasonable expectation that there are safe routes to take to the popular destinations. Unfortunately, their assumption is often wrong. We've seen out-of-towners choosing the sidewalk in the Loop and throughout the popular lakefront neighborhoods. 

We're advocates of following the law. Endangering pedestrians is not acceptable. And yet, when we see cyclists on the sidewalk, we can't get angry. We hear the message they're sending.

Fortunately, Mayor Emanuel has promised to install 100 miles of protected bike lanes in Chicago in his first term of office. These lanes will be a way for me, you, and your Aunt Jean to ride bikes, and keep everyone safe. We can't wait.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Planning for change at Children's Memorial

In June 2012, Children's Memorial Hospital will be shuttering its site at the intersection of Lincoln and Fullerton, and moving to its new Streeterville home. Plans are already getting underway for redevelopment of the six-acre site, which includes not only the main white brick building, but many of the smaller buildings immediately surrounding it. 

McCaffrey Interests is the developer and Antunovich Associates will be the architects. For an overview of the project and an aerial map of the entire site, see this article in The Architect's Newspaper.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
Alderman Michele Smith will hold a town hall meeting at Children's Memorial on Wednesday, September 14, 2011 at 6:30 pm in the Bigler Auditorium, to allow McCaffrey Interests to introduce themselves to the community, discuss the impact of the development on the surrounding area, and gather initial community input. All members of the public with an interest in the project are encouraged to attend. (Full details from Alderman Smith's newsletter below. Sign up for the newsletters on her website.)

Bicyclist and cars on Lincoln Avenue at the current Children's Memorial Hospital site. (Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
Bike Walk Lincoln Park will be at the town hall meeting. This is a big site that has the potential for being the newest jewel of Lincoln Park. Although it has been beneficial having a world-class pediatric hospital in our neighborhood all these years, the chance to begin anew raises exciting possibilities. We've heard people speak longingly about putting in an arts venue, a boutique hotel, or a permanent marketplace like Pike Street market in Seattle.

We'll be providing Alderman Smith with our recommendations for making sure that whatever is ultimately built is accommodating to bicyclists and pedestrians, and that includes functional details as well as aesthetic. 

The recommendations will include some things to avoid, like long blank walls that "deaden" the sidewalk space and discourage walking. Also, let's not repeat the mistake of designing the site with truck loading docks on Lincoln that force pedestrians and bicyclists into car traffic.

Truck docks and loading zone on Lincoln Avenue at Children's Memorial Hospital. (Photos: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
Our recommendations will also include plenty of "do's", of course. This busy intersection is near DePaul University, the Fullerton El stop, and all the theaters, bars and eateries up and down Lincoln Avenue. It has the potential for becoming a new "town center" for Lincoln Park, with new retail and restaurants at street level. 

Let's make sure that people are encouraged to arrive on foot, on bikes, and on public transit. The sidewalks should be wide enough to allow for plenty of room for purposeful walking as well as for strolling, with plantings and benches that give pedestrians a place to relax. 

Halsted and Lincoln are important bicycle commuting routes: It would be great to repaint the bike lanes, perhaps widen them, maybe even make them protected lanes. The new site should have plenty of bike racks, maybe even covered bike parking. 

The busy intersection of Halsted, Fullerton and Lincoln needs better accommodations for pedestrians and bicyclists. (Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
Nearby bus stops on Halsted and Fullerton should be upgraded from the current "pole in the ground" to having a bench and a shelter. The six-legged intersection of Lincoln/Halsted/Fullerton is the 11th most dangerous in the city for pedestrians, and it should receive full evaluation to make it safer for those crossing it on foot or on bike. 

Details like these matter. Now is the time to make your voice heard. Someone once said that it takes a place to build a community, and it takes a community to build a place. Let's make this a great one.

* This post was edited on September 13, 2011 to reflect that Antunovich Associates will be the architects, and not HOK, as previously reported.

Town Hall Meeting
Children's Memorial Hospital Development
September 14, 2011
6:30 p.m.
Bigler Auditorium at Children's Memorial Hospital
2300 Children's Plaza

I've promised that the development process for the Children's Memorial site will be transparent and data driven.  That means we need to understand the impact Children's has on the neighborhood today so we can compare it to the impact of any future proposal. 
I've asked Children's Memorial and the new developer, McCaffrey Interests, to bring this information to you:
  • Impact of the hospital on our community today
  • Impact on revenue for local businesses that we patronize
  • Current "base line" traffic data
  • Review of community input to date from HOK, which held three community meetings in 2009
  • Introduction of McCaffery Interests, the developer of the site, and their work both locally and nationally
  • My requirements for community feedback on the site's development plans as they unfold
  • Timeline for consideration of the development plans
  • Your thoughts on future development plans
We look forward to seeing you on September 14th!

Please note: NO DEVELOPMENT PLAN will be presented - this meeting is a review of work to date, and important information for the community.

  *The entrance to Bigler Auditorium is accessible from the main hospital driveway, directly across from the main entrance.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Calling for volunteers to count bicyclists!

The Chicago Bike Program needs volunteers to count downtown bicyclists, like this one on State Street.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park) 

Do you have a couple of hours to spare next Tuesday (9/13) or Saturday (9/17)? The Chicago Bike program (part of the Chicago Department of Transportation) needs volunteers to count bicyclists in and around the Loop! Volunteers will be briefly trained and given a form to use, and then sent to a designated place to count the cyclists going by! Easy, right? But it’s important work. The data will go to a national bike and pedestrian documentation project, and will also be used to help document the need for bicycle improvements right here in our fair city.

Below is the full information. David Smith, the CDOT Bikeways Planner who is coordinating the project, advised that there is still high need for volunteers for all three shifts, especially on Tuesday.

We’ll be participating Tuesday afternoon. Hope to see you there!

2011 Downtown Chicago Bike Count Project

The Chicago Department of Transportation Bike Program is participating in the National Bike and Pedestrian Documentation Project and needs volunteers to count bicyclists.  This project will elevate public awareness of bicycle transportation issues and help document the need for bicycle improvements.

Volunteers will be stationed throughout downtown during one or more of the following times:

Tuesday, September 13th – 7AM to 10AM
Tuesday, September 13th – 4PM to 7PM
Saturday, September 17th – Noon to 2PM

CDOT will provide training on data collection
No experience needed

To volunteer or for more info, please contact: David Smith, CDOT Bikeways Planner

Monday, September 5, 2011

Lessons learned from the Stolen Bike Registry

It’s an all-too-common scenario for Chicago bike owners: You return to the place you last saw your bike, and it’s gone. Stolen. Now what? 

You can never be too careful. (Photo seen on
You should file a police report, of course, but there's also the Chicago Stolen Bike Registry, which you can use to spread the word about your loss. It's kind of like an Amber Alert for our missing bikes. You provide information about the type of bike, when and where it was stolen, and details about how you locked it up. 

Even if your bike hasn't been stolen lately (ha!), it's been worth perusing the site to read the stories of other people's losses, so you can learn from their unfortunate experiences.

There were an average of three or four bikes reported stolen on the registry every day last month. After reading the entries regularly, here are the top ten lessons we’ve learned to help prevent bike theft:

1. Lock your bike up every time you’re not with it.

A surprising number of people assume their bike is safe to leave unlocked because it’s in a gated back yard or inside a condo storage unit area accessible only to other condo owners. Even if you park in front of an open business, and you run in for five minutes to grab a cuppa joe, lock it up. Thieves move quickly.

2. Lock it through the frame, not just through one of your wheels.

Especially if you have quick-release wheels. ‘Nuff said.

3. Don’t use a cable lock or combination/chain lock alone.

These are very easily snipped with cable cutters. You may as well just be using a Twist-tie to secure your bike. Don’t do it.

4. Even U-Locks are not a guarantee against thieves.

Anything can be cut, with a little more effort. Having said this, U-Locks are your safest deterrent against thieves. There seem to be many more reports of stolen bikes that were secured with cable or chain locks than there are with U-Locks.

5. Bike thieves like all kinds of bikes.

Road bikes, hybrids, fixies, mountain bikes, old bikes, new bikes -- they’re all on the registry. 
This bike's owner is doing a few things right, including using a U-Lock and a locking to a bike rack.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
6. Bikes are stolen from all parts of the city.

Don’t think you’re immune to bike theft because you’ve parked it in a relatively crime-free area like the Loop, Old Town, or Lincoln Park. 

7. Bike thieves will put some effort into stealing bikes.

There are regular reports of bikes stolen from second-story patios and locked private garages. Some thieves have key access to bike storage areas and aren’t afraid of the security cameras. Also, they don’t just ride bikes away: If you only lock the bike to itself, they will carry it away, or maybe toss it onto the back of a pickup truck.

8. Locking to a pole is not as good as locking to an actual bike rack.

If you use an uncapped pole, they can easily lift the bike up off the pole. Even if you use a street sign pole, they can unscrew the sign and then lift your bike over the top. See lesson #7.

This one is in the "no-no" category. (Photo seen on
9. Keep a current picture of your bike, and a close up of the serial number, just in case.

It’s useful to be able to post not just a manufacturer’s stock photo of your model, but a picture of your actual bike, especially if it has any distinguishing marks on it that can help make a positive ID. 

10. Sometimes, there’s a happy ending.

According the site’s statistics, 4% of bikes are recovered. It’s a sad statistic reflecting that 96% are gone for good. Before you get too depressed, make sure to browse through the uplifting stories of bikes reunited with their owners.

Hopefully with a little forethought, you’ll never see your bike listed in the first place!