(Photos by J. Maus/BikePortland)
Last weekend I was a bit miffed when I rolled into my local New Seasons Market and noticed the bike parking at the main front entrance had been completely removed. After years of parking my bike there, it was a case of “Dude, where’s my bike parking?!”
About seven or so city-issued blue staple racks had been removed. This is a very busy store and these racks were nearly always at capacity, so I wondered what was up. Now it turns out that — in a not surprising development given their bike-friendliness — New Seasons had a plan all along.
According to New Seasons operations manager Elizabeth Nardi, the company is simply tweaking its bike parking arrangement based on customer feedback and lessons they’ve learned from their new store on North Williams Avenue. Nardi said customers at the Arbor Lodge Store have requested covered bike parking so New Seasons now has new some covered racks on the west side of the store (on Interstate Avenue).
Nardi didn’t say that the racks were removed to make more room for the ever-expanding floral department; but it’s clear that the space is needed for store operations and the removal of the racks will alleviate crowding at the front of the store.
But the biggest news for Arbor Lodge New Seasons customers is the new on-street bike corral on Holman and the new entrance and checkout register at the south side of the store. The new bike corral and rear entry is excellent for bicycling customers on many levels: the parking allows people to roll right into a secure staple rack without having to mix with people walking on sidewalks; the use of the rear entry means bike riders don’t have to contend with a busy parking lot on the Rosa Parks Way side of the store; and since bike riding customers tend to buy fewer items per trip, they can now grab and go quickly by using the rear entrance and new cash register.
Nardi says New Seasons has more plans to “enliven” the corner of Interstate and Holman, and new chairs and tables are on the way.
While I’d prefer to still have the racks right up front near the main entrance (I’d sometimes leave my 8-year-old next to my bike while I ran in to pick something up, which I’d never do at the new rear entrance), overall it feels like New Seasons has once again demonstrated respect and sensitivity to their bicycling customers.
What do you think of the changes?
Disclaimer: New Seasons Market is a BikePortland advertiser.
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Thanks for publishing the story! It is worth making mention of this and I commend New Seasons for responding to customer’s concerns and making the situation better.
I remember being dissapointed when they opened and were not taking advantage of the Holman Street entry/exit. In addition to all the advantages mentioned above, there is a lot if potential for outdoor activity with that south-facing corner.
I’m glad to see they’ve made this change. The spaces at the front entry were too close to the wall anyway. It’s great to see them opening up that door at the rear of the store right next to the deli counter and eating area. I’ve long-wondered why you can enter through that door at the Concordia store, but not at the Arbor Lodge store.
Heads up Arbor Lodgers! I work at this New Seasons and would like to share that the rear entrance in question is only open till about 8pm. I love the new bike parking!!!! XOXO Isaac.
Is there a net increase in the number of bike parking spaces?
Just a little correction. The racks at the front of the store that were removed were not City staple racks, they were installed by New Seasons. Also worth noting that NS paid for the new bike corral and voluntarily made these bike parking changes.
I think this is weak. New Seasons should put more covered bike parking spaces front and center, not less.
Amen – I feel relegated to the back of the building and this store looks more and more pro-car than pro-bike, with the more SUV-friendly parking lot lines painted in the lot and zero bike visibility in the front.
Thanks for the explanation. I was really annoyed to see the parking at the front eliminated. But this is better.
check out the sweet bike parked there, must have some cool customers!
While I appreciate having bike parking near the alternate exit, I do NOT like that they completely wiped out all bike parking in the front, making those of us who do all of our grocery shopping by bike have to go to the side or the back instead of having a spot near the main entrance like drivers do. It feels a bit second class. The funny thing is they still have the bike parking structure near the can recycling machine but they’ve covered it with a rug to discourage cyclists from having front row parking. I suppose they might as well have gotten rid of the main bay of bike spots because the floral employees were always blocking off the last two spots, but I don’t think completely eliminating bike visibility from the front of the store is friendly. Also, while a second escape is nice, the back exit door is tiny and going out that way is really awkward with a couple bags and then someone else having to wait for you (or vice versa) because it’s not a double door.