This item caught our eye when reviewing the upcoming City Council agenda: “Summary Report – City Council November 5, 2013 Retreat.” The report includes a section called the “bike rack” where discussion items are parked for future consideration. The staff report explains:
‘Bike rack’? This is amusing because bike advocates have pressed Beverly Hills officials for the past three years to install bicycle racks in our business districts to encourage folks to ride a bicycle for their local trips. But our transportation officials have not installed a single sidewalk rack. And that’s despite the obvious need: more bicycles than ever are locked to parking meters and lamp poles in our commercial districts. We have the racks already. The city paid more than $500 each for them yet they sit in a warehouse.
Yet we create a metaphorical bike rack for parking discussion items at a City Council retreat?
Perhaps we’re not recognizing progress when we see it. Retreat facilitators often create a ‘parking lot’ to sideline thorny issues. Here in Beverly Hills we’re calling it the ‘bike rack.’ Is that progress or a cynical gesture from a city that can’t be bothered to install an actual bike rack? Those of us who take the trouble to ride a bicycle for local errands can’t lock up to a metaphor, after all.