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UW Police are piloting bike valet and registration service at UW Station

The UW Police Department is trialing the idea of a free bike valet service at UW Station this week in an attempt to help fight bike theft and get more bikes registered on the free bicycle database Bike Index. You do not need to be a UW student or staff to participate.

The valet will be staffed 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday this week only, and they will have computers ready to help you register your bike online if you have not done so already.

There is only space in the pilot service for 100 bikes, so you may need to get there early to take advantage of the service. They’ll be set up just north of the station in front of Husky Stadium.


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UW Station’s location just off the Burke-Gilman Trail has made it a major bike-to-transit connection. Bike racks filled up immediately after opening as people from all over northeast and north-central Seattle realized that biking to the train is the easiest and often fastest way to get around. Sound Transit has since added more bike parking to help with the crunch, but the station could be a good place for something a bit more organized. UW already offers a bike valet service to handle the influx of bikes during home games at Husky Stadium.

Bike Index is a non-profit, nationwide database of bikes. It’s primary use is to serve as a one-stop shop for locating stolen bike listings. But very often, people have no record of their bike’s serial number and other identifying information. So Bike Index encourages people to register their bikes now. Then, if it is unfortunately stolen later, the details are all recorded and ready for you to post them quickly. The quicker a listing is posted and the more accurate its details, the more likely you are to get your bike back if police, a bike shop or a helpful community member finds it.

Bike Index powers Seattle Bike Blog’s stolen bike listings.

More details from the event page:

The University of Washington Police Department will be holding a trial Bike Valet event during the days of September 4-6, 2018. The times of the Bike Valet will be 7am-5pm.

A UW Police Officer will be paired with one or more civilian volunteers to park and watch over bikes in bike valet equipment provided by UW Transportation Services.

The Bike Valet will be located just north of the UW Sound Transit Station near Husky Stadium. Space is limited to 100 bikes so come early and take advantage of this great opportunity to interact with your campus police department!

Participants MUST be registered in Bike Index at http://bikeindex.org.

Staff working the event will be able to do on the spot registrations but we highly recommend interested individuals register beforehand to cut down on waiting times.


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7 responses to “UW Police are piloting bike valet and registration service at UW Station”

  1. asdf2

    When I bike to UW station, I usually use Lime Bike, rather than my own bike, to avoid the risk of theft.

    It would be nice if some sort of secure parking we’re available as an alternative. How is it that Northgate Transit Center has on demand bike lockers, but UW station does not? It’s not like there isn’t room for them.

    1. Me too! Part of my commute at least twice a week.

  2. (Another) Tom

    My bike locker at Columbia City station is one of my favorite things in life. I just love it. Sometimes my patterns have me using it 5 times/week, other times just a few times a month. Either way it is so convenient to roll up, roll it in, and walk away. No bike or helmet or soaked rain shell to schlep onto the crowded train and I don’t worry that my bike (or my wheels or my lights or my saddle or my pump…) won’t be there when I return. It even has enough space to squeeze two bikes in – very useful when I am headed for a night out downtown with my partner.

    They should put as many bike lockers in at every station as is reasonably possible. Bike lockers make the bike + transit combination better and can help tip the scales toward everyday viability for many.

    1. asdf2

      The bike lockers also need to be on demand, rather a leased long term. Building a separate locker for each person who occasionally uses one does not scale well.

      There are already on demand lockers available at various park and ride lots, rentable for 5 cents per hour. Ideally, every bike locker, region-wide, would be on demand. The leased lockers, once you get one, you don’t want to ever give it up, even if your commute changes so you don’t need it anymore, because you know, once you do give it up, you’ll never be able to get it back. In the aggregate, this leaves to half the lockers at Montlake Freeway Station empty each day, while people are on multi year long waiting lists to get one.

  3. ronp

    I take my bike on the light rail so I can ride 8.5 miles home in the evening, but I would love to support the valet system. Only saw four bikes in it this morning.

  4. Thomas

    This is great. I never understood why UW or ST didn’t plan, design, and build a bike valet from the start for Link given the success of the bike valet at the OHSU tram in Portland. Very similar situation in terms of station access by bike. This is such a no brainer, especially with the terrible escalator/elevator situation at UW station.

  5. Tony

    Love this idea. Does anyone know what the outcome of the pilot? Are they moving forward with it?

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