Weather protected bike parking is a plus for cycling commuters and other riders who look for high levels of service at their destinations. Keeping the bike protected from the elements extends component life, protects other gear and for the cyclist, keeps the seat dry for a comfortable ride - pedaling in the rain is fine, sitting in it is like wearing a wet diaper!
Handlegrips work better when they are dry and moving parts stay a little cleaner - it all adds up.
Studies at the University of Washington, in Seattle, have also shown that sheltered bike parking doubles the use of racks underneath, adding value to investments in parking technology. Inviting people to ride and providing them with a good level of service at their destination helps to grow cycling as a transportation and lifestyle choice, making for healtheir and more sustainable communities.
Weather protected parking with extensive security features are essential at workplaces, but there are many locations where shelters for shorter term bike parking will also be useful. Downtown shopping districts, university campuses with high bicycle trip demand, or recreation and entertainment centres that attract longer stays than those trips generated by retail outlets or coffee shops will also benefit from attractive and well placed shelters for bikes. Opportunistic designs with building overhangs are popular but increasingly, communities are installing custom and purpose built shelters to serve the needs of cyclists who ride whatever the weather.
Duo-Gard industries is a leader in providing custom and off the shelf bike parking shelters as well as bike racks and other street furniture lines. Shelters from this company are aesthetic and functional and earn top marks. More at: http://www.duo-gard.com/products/shelters/bike-shelters/
Bike parking shelter galleries at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/luton/sets/72157594484263561/