Cyclists disappointed by bike parking ordinance

Published: Oct. 19, 2013 at 1:25 AM EDT|Updated: Oct. 19, 2013 at 3:34 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - It's is a common sight in downtown Charleston, but soon cyclists will not be able to park just anywhere on the stretch of King Street between Calhoun and Spring.

"We should really be encouraged to bike, and any ordinance that limits our ability to park our bikes in convenient safe locations is really disappointing to me," says cyclist Melinda Scharstein.

This week the City of Charleston passed a one-year pilot program that will ban securing bikes to street lights, stop signs and trees.

"It will be a nice aesthetic for the city to have," says College of Charleston junior Nicholas Allen. "It will look better, but I think they need to put more public bike racks out if they're going to do that."

City officials say it's a safety issue because the bikes are in the way of pedestrians, and while some bikers can appreciate that, they say they wonder about their safety.

"Parking my bike in a corral may be several blocks away from whatever my destination is at night doesn't always feel, that doesn't feel safe and secure to me," explains Scharstein. "I would hope that the city would consider my safety as a cyclist."

The ordinance will take effect November 15th. Police will impound all illegally parked bicycles. Owners will have to pay a $45 storage fee to reclaim their property.

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