I had the need to visit the Oregon State University campus yesterday. As part of the plan, I was going to have lunch with Ray. He's the training manager for our program. I'll be forever grateful to Stacy for telling me about the motorcycle parking just off Monroe Street. Parking on campus can be problematic. You either need to buy a permit or park in a metered spot. The lot right in front of the building I visit is metered for an hour. Sometimes I push my luck on the meter. Last time I got caught the fine was $15.00.
The other option is to park off campus. 14th Street has two-hour meters. I often park there and walk several blocks. Right now, though, there's a bunch of road construction and rennovation going on. The parking area Stacy told me about is free and it's only about three blocks from headquarters. I'm grateful to the City of Corvallis for providing this for us riders.
Who would have thought that I'd have trouble finding a spot in a motorcycle-only area? After all, there's twenty spots! Arriving at 11:15 AM, I got the last one. Wow! Motorcycle commuting is alive and well in this neck of the woods. It was great to see.
Elvira's somewhere in the middle of the pack on the far end. When this space is full, it's kind of like a miniature bike show. You never know what you'll see. For example, here's a bike that is the epitome of utility. Pretty much all go and no show.
I really don't know what to make of this. Personally, I'd never want to be seen on something so ratty. Does that mean I have really high standards and this rider doesn't? Or does it mean I have some hangups that this rider doesn't? The bike runs, obviously. There's no turn signals so the riding has to happen in the daylight. Which is okay for a daytime commuter. I find there's a blend of looking down on the rider and, at the same time, a little envy. How cool to be so secure that you could ride something totally for utilitarian purposes!
There could be a few more motorcycle parking spots. Right in the middle of the motorcycle parking is a spot reserved for bicycles. I took this photo and purposely didn't zoom in on the sign. I wanted to show the gap between the two groups of motorcycles.
I'm not a bicycle person. It just seems this place isn't really a good one to encourage bicycle parking. For one, I see no place to secure the bikes. I'm pretty sure most bicycle riders would want to be able to secure the bikes to something. Ok, I admit there's the sign pole. Visions of a really long chain for all the bikes float through my head. Wouldn't that be something to see? How about a hitching rail like you see in the Westerns for horses? Or rings in embedded in the street?
I've seen bike racks on campus. It also seems that this is kind of far away from most of the destinations. Farther down Monroe Street are bicycle racks on the edge of the sidewalk. A person on a bicycle would use the bike racks closer to the eateries.
Due to the small size of a bicycle, it would be easier to get the bike closer to the building where a person works or visits. With a motorcycle, you expect to park and walk a little. My suggestion would be to eliminate the bicycle parking and make more motorcycle spots here. Oh well.
Like I say, the good news is that two wheeled commuting is thriving. Of course, the first really heavy rain starts this weekend! It will be interesting to see what happens when the weather turns. If it's like most motorcycle parking areas, I won't have much problem finding a spot pretty soon!
Miles and smiles,