|[A Minneapolis brewery.]|
Bike racks are so easy to get right, and almost everywhere in Saint Paul get it so wrong.
Oh, and garbage collection.
OK. Let's try again. If there are two things that are really simple that Saint Paul can’t seem to figure out, it’s bike racks and garbage collection.
Oh, and crosswalks… Oh yeah, and tax assessments for street maintenance… And bike boulevards… And walking in and out of downtown... And snow plowing.
Oh hell, let’ s stick with bike racks for a second.
|[Only in Saint Paul.]|
This is true almost across the board, from businesses to schools to libraries to municipal buildings. It even holds true for breweries — breweries! — which, let’s be honest, if there is one kind of business that should be catering to trendy young bearded beer-drinking bicyclists by having good bike racks, it’s breweries.
When Clutch Brewing opened up recently in the Keg and Case Market and even they, with all the high-end aplomb, did not have good bike parking, I figured it was time to look into the situation with Saint Paul breweries on a (keg and) case by case basis.
Also, I’ve taught geography for years and am used to giving out grades, so here goes.
What the bike rack grades mean:
- A+ Ideal, a Minneapolis-brewery-level achievement.
- A Good effort, good outcome, good bike parking.
- B At least they tried, and it could be worse.
- C Technically there is a bike rack, but whoever bought and/or installed the rack had never parked a bike before and it sucks.
- D They didn’t try, but you can still park a bike thanks to nearby poles or gas meters.
- F Failure.
As always, any breweries that have problems with their grades can revise and re-submit their work for full credit.
[All Saint Paul breweries in alphabetical order]
12welve Eyes: C
A weirdly bad bike rack — just a railing in an alley — but they installed it there, so they get some partial credit? It is hard to mount your bike on the curb and affix it to the railing, and even if you do, you might still be worried a truck will squash it. Also, you’re in an alley. (You can also lock your bike to one of the nearby window wells.)
That said, it does say “bike parking” on the brewery’s sandwich board sign, which is the equivalent of putting a bad term paper in one of those fancy plastic binder covers.
A poor effort. That said, while this rack would normally merit a worse grade, this brewery might get some credit for extenuating circumstances.
Bad Weather: B
Good, but turned in late and needed revisions.
After a few poor showings, finally came up with something that does not suck. The first effort was bad, then it was hit by a car and removed. They came back with a good rack within sight of the door, even if it is small. There are also a few small racks installed on the sidewalk.
Still underwhelming and under capacity, but could be worse.
The best bike rack in Saint Paul. Much like their beer, gets all the details right.
Barrel Theory: C [Updated.]
Blackstack: C- / D+
A wheel bender in a difficult alcove. Very disappointing, hard to read. Almost worse that they tried and failed than if they hadn't tried at all. [See also this report.]
It’s downright amazing how almost every Saint Paul brewery gets bike racks wrong. In Minneapolis, bike parking is almost always great. @BlackStackBrew pic.twitter.com/Ekm8ce0lxT— William Lindeke (@BillLindeke) September 18, 2018
Burning Brothers: [Unknown]
(I have not been here.)
Clutch Brewing: B- / C+ [Pending revision.]
Not great, and docked points for lateness.
When they opened they had no bike racks at all, but apparently there are a couple hoop racks along the sidewalk now.
[Note: I am being told they have submited new bike racks for revision.]
Dual Citizen: A
Great effort, not ideal location.
They have lots of bike racks (including a deluxe two-level bike rack!) in the back by the patio. If you bike to the front door, though, there is nothing but parking meters.
Flat Earth: C- [Updated.]
Great Waters: D+
At least it’s downtown, so there are plenty of sign poles and tree guards around.
|[Typical downtown Saint Paul bike parking looks like this.]|
Lake Monster: A
Spacious wonderful racks in sight of the front door.
|[They are still working on unicycle parking. If only there was a safe way to bike there!]|
Good, but incomplete.
Four Dero racks are a good start, but should have at least three times as many of these lined up along the patio and parking lot.
|[Not ideal; more racks please.]|
Tin Whiskers: D+
Copied from the same source as Barrel Theory.
Please note that parking meters cannot be used as a legitimate source for full credit.
Urban Growler: C+
Shoddy work, could be better.
A small cheap rack in the otherwise spacious parking lot. Lots of room for improvement.
No effort here.
Railings are not a legitimate source to receive full credit.
|[Lots of bikes, zero racks.]|
Could use some more revision, but otherwise good work.
A large bike rack on the patio grass is great, though it is a bit difficult to find and use some of the time.