City Dock and Main Street will have more parking by next spring—bicycle parking that is.
Annapolis and the Arts Council of Anne Arundel County each acquired $2,500 in grants to create artistic bike racks for the city's arts and entertainment district.
"We knew that we needed more bike racks to make it more appealing to ride downtown," said Iain Banks, the city's mobility and parking specialist. "That doesn’t mean that they have to be regular aluminum racks. They can serve two functions."
That's where the arts council comes in. Its members will serve as part of a juried panel that will pick designs from area artists, which combine form and function to create bike racks reflecting life in Annapolis or the arts and entertainment district.
Banks used bike racks around Wall Street in Manhattan that are shaped like dollar signs as example. He said he hopes the $5,000 will be enough to produce about 15 to 25 racks, and the goal is to have them ready for installation by the start of the 2013 cycling season in late March to early April.
"It's a great opportunity for local artists to design a fun element for the district," said April Nyman, art council executive director.
She envisions the racks as being colorful, artistic installations that reflect life in the downtown area.
The two have not decided whether there will be one winning design, or whether several winners will each create their own racks.
"I think it would be wonderful if there were many designs, but that will certainly depend on the budget," Nyman said.
The jury will begin accepting submissions early this fall. Nyman said anyone in Annapolis or Anne Arundel County is welcome to try.
What theme do you think the bike racks should have? Will you be submitting your own design?