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Brent changes bike storage unit supplier


03 April 2020

The London Borough of Brent has changed the supplier of its secure bike storage units for residential streets. 

Brent has traditionally used Cyclehoop’s Bikehangars. These provide lockable and sheltered parking for six bikes and take up the area of one vehicle parking space. Brent installed its first unit in 2016 and now has 20. 

Last November, TfL awarded Brent funding for 38 more storage units, requiring them to be installed by the end of March. 

Brent says Cyclehoop had an influx of demand and could not guarantee delivery by the deadline. The council consequently used a London Borough of Walham Forest framework to procure units from Falco UK Ltd.  

Amar Dave, Brent’s strategic director of regeneration and environment, told councillors that Falco’s Falcopods actually had a number of design advantages. 

They were a “more inclusive design”, able to accommodate “non-standard cycles, such as upright, Dutchstyle bikes and bikes with children’s seats”.

Falco’s units were also “more secure”. “Cyclehoop has experienced some issues with their Bikehangars being targeted by vandals and the locks destroyed, with bikes reported stolen,” said Dave, though only one break-in has taken place to a Brent unit. 

Falco’s units had a different  lock design, which made them more secure, he said. In addition, the council can apply its own logo to Falco’s units.

Brent residents pay £36 annual rental for a Cyclehoop space and £30 for a Falco unit in the first three years. These fees reflect a 50 per cent subsidy by Brent. After three years, the rental rises to £72 and £60 respectively. 

The suppliers manage rentals and take the revenue risk.

Addendum - 27 April 2020:

LTT has received correspondence from Cyclehoop challenging some of Brent's comments reported in the above story as follows.

It was stated:

1. FalcoPod’s have a “more inclusive design” than Bikehangars. Although FalcoPod’s offer greater unit height for taller cycles, Bikehangar’s offer greater rack spacing for cycles with wider handlebars. According to our survey data, a Bikehangar accommodates 99% of commuter cycles types.
2. Falco’s units are “more secure”. “Cyclehoop has experienced some issues with their Bikehangars being targeted by vandals and the locks destroyed, with bikes reported stolen.” This is an unfounded and incorrect statement. Falco have installed a minimal number of FalcoPods on streets and is yet to have long-term field testing to evidence how their units withstand being targeted by vandals. Our research strongly suggests FalcoPod units will encounter similar issues. Internal testing has shown the Bikehangar will achieve the maximum Sold Secure rating of Gold when externally tested later this year.
3. “The council can apply its own logo to Falco’s units”. This statement is misleading, councils can also apply their own logo to Cyclehoop’s Bikehangar units.
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