Valet parking is a standard in SoCal, but Long Beach is taking that luxury to a whole new level. They are now offering Valet parking for bikes!
It's all part of a plan by the city and others to help convince people to pedal to their destinations and leave their cars behind.
"The whole idea is just to make an encouraging environment for people to ride their bikes. If they have somewhere safe to park, they'll do so," says Sumire Gant, Long Beach Transportation Programs Officer, as reported by USA Today.
The lots are called Bikestation's and the facilities provide secure bicycle parking at several of Long Beach's train and bus transit hubs, which is a hit with commuters.
"I love it," says David Clement, 50, an aerospace engineer who pedals each day from his Long Beach home to the Bikestation valet parking shop near the transit center. He then rides a Metro train to work near Los Angeles airport. "If you're anywhere within a few miles of a train or work, it's the way to go," as reported by USA Today.
Long Beach is also building a new bike parking building, with more spaces. The current facility can store 100 or more bikes.
The cost is reasonable too. Long Beach charges $100 a year for unlimited parking for cyclists, and $20 for an electronic key allowing 24-hour access
The city also provides equipment to local bicycle clubs and organizations that want to offer secure parking at special events, reports USA Today.
And the Bikestation's can help the Long Beach economy too.
They're built by Long Beach-based Mobis Transportation Alternatives, who has contracted with Washington, D.C.; Seattle and other California cities to set up Bikestation's.
In Washington, Bikestation provides 125 secure parking places for bicyclists at Union Station near the U.S. Capitol, says Andréa White-Kjoss, Bikestation President and CEO, as reported by USA Today.
As for Long Beach, USA Today reports that the city pays $48,000 a year to the company, which covers about 30% of costs.