The Chainlink

Has anyone had success getting the city to remove an abandoned bike?

...because I sure haven't.

There has been a very neglected, obviously abandoned, bike locked to a bicycle rack outside of my workplace for what seems like an eternity (it's been there at least since November '10). I have been calling the city relentlessly since February requesting that it be removed. The last 2 times I've called I was told the request would be marked "urgent" and that they would "get to it as soon as possible." Still nothing. I know the city likes to takes its sweet ol' time with things like this, but c'mon...5 months and counting?

With the summer bicyclists now emerging, parking spots are becoming more and more scarce. I want all the available bike racks I can get! Yes, I also requested (last year) another bike rack to be installed. You can probably guess the outcome of that as well.

What else can I do to free up this spot? I'm not interested in the DIY angle grinder method. Does anyone have any kind of hookup with the city to make this happen?

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Forget 311.  I have called and emailed the city's bike parking program manager asking for help with this situation.  That was about 2 weeks ago and still ZERO response.  This is so ridiculous and disappointing that the city cannot seem to handle (or even respond to) such a simple request!!

Sorry this has been such an ordeal, Laura.

When you say "zero response", do you mean the bike hasn't been removed, or that there was no answer/return call, and no response to the e-mail?

When I called, there was no answer so I left a very nice and detailed message.  No call back.  On the voicemail he said "for a faster response, email me."  So I did.  No email response either.  I left my phone number, email address and every other piece of information they could ever need. 


The fact that this whole thing has been ongoing since February is downright comical.  I just can't wrap my mind around what could possibly be going on at the office that supposedly handles this....spontaneous combustion? the plague? space alien abduction?  It had better be something good...

If the only available rack is full I will occasionally lock my bike directly to an abandoned-looking bike.
I am curious to know where your abandoned bike is, Laura?

HALLELUJAH!!!  The bike gods have heard me!!  Today I noticed that the abandoned bicycle's u-lock has mysteriously *disappeared*!!  I had to look about 5 times to make sure my eyes weren't fooling me, but sure enough, my battle with this bike is finally over!  Yes, the bike is still presently sitting wedged under the bike rack...but unlocked.  The u-lock is gone, though. 

This leads me to my next question - Who is responsible for chopping off that u-lock?  Thank you thank you thank you!!  I'm assuming it has to be someone from chainlink.  A thief wouldn't leave the bike there and the city wouldn't leave it there either.  To whoever was responsible, I would really like to thank you.  I understand if you don't want to fess up publicly, so please send me a message letting me know!!

BTW, this whole abandoned bike and motorcycle (still unmoved) situation is taking place at 1401 W Webster Ave.  Anyone who wants a rusty women's schwinn roadbike for any reason is more than welcome to make that disappear, for the taking now!!  Otherwise, I'm throwing that waste of space by the dumpster.


Now I just have that stupid motorcycle to contend with....

FYI, we (I) have been behind on Chainlink monitoring/discussing and missed this until now...I've passed it to a couple of people at CDOT so they are directly aware of this thread/issue.



Ethan Spotts, Active Trans

My vacation was great!  Thanks for asking, Kevin.  Spent some time in Detroit....lots of bikes and baseball!

Kevin C said:

If it's any comfort, the universe is more than likely simply indifferent to you Laura. How was your vacation?

Wow!  A real life tag.  Unbelievable!  Thanks for proving that they actually do exist.  So there is hope...

Gooseberry Pie! said:

I saw this downtown (on Michigan between Monroe and Madison I think) on the evening of the 22nd...

Thank you, Ethan!  I appreciate you bringing attention to this topic.  Hopefully my experience will shed some light on some of the flaws and gaps in the execution of handling abandoned bikes.  Please keep us posted on any progress. I would be interested to know where the evident breakdown of communication stems from.  Thanks again!!

Active Transportation Alliance said:

FYI, we (I) have been behind on Chainlink monitoring/discussing and missed this until now...I've passed it to a couple of people at CDOT so they are directly aware of this thread/issue.



Ethan Spotts, Active Trans

VICTORY!!!!!  After just 7 short months, I finally have an open bike rack at work!  I'm still curious as to who removed the u-lock....anyone? anyone? 


I called 311 a few weeks ago about an abandoned bike right in front of my apartment and there is still no tag on it. It would be really great for this process to work a bit faster than 7 months. I guess I'll just look forward to it being gone in, what, March? ;)
Wow!!  Such good news!  I hope this means that this program is finally starting to get some much-needed attention.  Hopefully the abandoned bike in front of your apartment is taken care of quickly.  The only advice I can give is to be persistent about it.  Good luck!

Rhea Butcher said:



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