The University of Arizona is on the verge of opening a bicycle valet service for students, employees and guests.

According to Bill Davidson, the UA Parking and Transportation Services marketing manager, they had hoped to open it on the first day of classes but still have a few minor details to finalize. Davidson said the valet would be open within two weeks.

The bike valet corral, which consists of dozens of racks surrounded by metal barriers, is located on the southwest corner of the UA mall near the Nugent building.

“We wanted to make it high profile so everyone knows about it,” Davidson said.

The valet service will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and will cost fifty cents per day. The Parking and Transportation Services department will sell punch cards so cyclists won’t have to pay each day.

Using the valet four times a week for the 16 weeks of a semester would cost $32. Renting a bicycle enclosure through the UA is $35 for the year. A private bike locker is $90 yearly.

Davidson said they decided to charge fifty cents to help offset the cost of setting up the program and hiring employees to work at the valet station.

One student employee will check-in the bikes and give the customer a receipt to pick up the bike. The second employee, who is a full time Parking and Transportation Services enforcement officer, will take the bike into the station and ensure the bikes are secure.

Davidson said they will add employees if there is enough demand for the valet. He said they will also consider other locations on campus for additional valet stations.

Davidson said they created the valet program as another way to curb bike theft and encourage people to ride their bikes to campus rather than driving.

“Originally the thought was that bike theft is an issue and we want to try to do something to solve that problem,” Davidson said.¬† “We have the lockers and enclosures, but we were looking for something a bit more convenient and something that you didn’t have to lock yourself into for a whole semester or year.”

Bikes that are left at the valet station past the 7 p.m. closing time will be taken to the nearest bike enclosure and stored until the valet station opens the next morning.

What do you think? Would you use it?

10 thoughts on “Bike valet opening soon on UA campus”
  1. Wow, that’s cool. So many people haven’t even heard of bike valet. Plus it’s cheap. Awesome, hope it gets used.

  2. I don’t know if I’ll be using the valet system. Mostly because of laziness I like riding from building to building during the day and having to check my bike in and out might be a pain.

    However, the pricing of the valet makes it enticing. As you wrote in the article, using the valet 4 times a week is cheaper than the bike locker and only twice the the price of the enclosure – which is surprising because the valet requires 2 employees 12 hours a day.

    I’m going to think about it though as it would be bad news if my daily transportation was stolen. Thanks for the article- especially because I didn’t know any of the three options existed until now!

  3. As an employee at the U of A, I really wonder about the costs, very skeptical of the saftey, and is it really needed. I’d much rather see the bike racks on campus in more well lighted and less hidden areas and for the U of A police to be more pro active about catching bike thiefs (they’re more reactionary after the fact). It would better serve the public and you could charge more if they had this at events. And you’ll still need a lock if you go anywhere else! As a non-elite employee in my 4th year without a cost of living raise, facing a very steep rise in insurance in the coming year, I constantly wonder why there is always money for things like this that aren’t really anyone’s priorty! I guess everybody can’t be a mediocre football or basketball coach and get a half a million dollar raise. And if anyone knows where that elusive money tree is on campus, do tell!

  4. I’m really glad to see these kinds of services popping up and I hope they will only grow in the future. But as for now, I’m probably going to skip it until the safety issue is fully vetted. Hiring two college kids, probably overworked from school and/or extra curricular activities (at the bar and elsewhere), to sit around for hours on end and pretend to monitor an open lot is, well, shall we say less than reassuring. I’d rather just roll a few feet to where I can strap my baby to a rack with a D-lock and some thick-gauge cable. Security is a big deal for working class riders because we often can’t afford to lose a bike; it’s our only ride!

    Who knows?! Maybe I’m wrong and this will dramatically decrease bicycle theft on campus. But I’m kinda dubious. Feels a little like a hollow gesture.

    Perhaps, as I have seen on other campuses around the country (UC Davis, for example), they could construct a breathable enclosure. Not only does a set of walls deter would-be thieves but the roof would ensure limited sun damage for seats, handlebar wrap, etc. Also, it would send a strong signal to the alt transportation community that the University of Arizona isn’t just gonna keep throwing up these massive parking garages all over campus; that they really do care about saving money, encouraging cheaper and healthier lifestyles, tackling our growing climate change problems, and in general working to enhance the campus-going experience by supporting bicyclists and pedestrians.

  5. Just to clarify, the student employee will take check the bike in, but the full-time Parking and Transportation Services employee will be the one handling and watching the bikes.

    I’d also be more comfortable if I could lock my bike AND have a PTS employee watching it.

  6. The U of A cares about saving money? When Likens left, he made 375k after almost, Shelton comes in at almost 500k. Stoops came in at 400k and last year was given a MILLION dollar a year raise. Lute (who won a national championship) left at 375k. Miller came in at 1mil and was given a 500k raise before his first game. Boosters don’t pay these obsene salaries, taxpayers do. And I’m not even going off on the small everyday waste and all the people who don’t have much to do or are that necessary. I’ve worked for a local school district and the U and to say the U of A is about saving money is NOT TRUE. On that point there are lots of facts to prove you wrong!

  7. You’ve really, really misunderstood my comment. I did NOT say the University of Arizona cares about saving money. If you go back re-read my original reply you will discover that I was SPECULATING on the potential message that would be sent to alt transportation community IF the University spent money on building an enclosure for bicycles. You are way off.

    Actually, I quite agree with you that the University regularly misuses or poorly allocates money. The vernacular for that kind of activity is “waste.” As a former employee their myself I can assure you that I AGREE with you.

  8. “they could construct a breathable enclosure. Not only does a set of walls deter would-be thieves but the roof would ensure limited sun damage for seats, handlebar wrap, etc.”

    Actually, there are several covered locked (though not staffed) enclosures on campus that I know of; in at least two different parking garages, the back stairwell of the University & Cherry LPL building, and NOAO. There may be more, these are just the ones I’ve seen. A pretty good deal actually for $35 a year. I think the garage ones have security cameras too.

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