by Paul Bowers
In case you were skeptical about whether people would use the bike corrals that have been built downtown in recent years, here's some evidence that they're being put to use:
This photo was taken Saturday afternoon outside D'Allesandro's Pizza during the Elliotborough Block & Roll Music Festival. This particular bike corral was one of the first ones the city built in late 2012.
Bike corrals can be controversial because they require eliminating a valuable on-street parking space. According to a study conducted in the early 2000s by the Gibbs Planning Group, each on-street parking spot in a Charleston retail district generates about a quarter-million dollars a year in retail revenue.
On the other hand, as witnessed Saturday, bicyclists can eat an awful lot of pizza.
The city has installed several bike corrals on King Street, and police have been confiscating bikes that are locked to anything other than a bike rack on the stretch of King between Spring and Calhoun streets. City Councilman Mike Seekings has said the city should set a minimum standard of one bike corral per block per side of the street in the affected area of King Street.