Earlier I wrote about how small design considerations like showers were critical to encouraging, or even allowing, bicycle commuting (I assume we're all in agreement that bike commuting is a good thing). Another piece of the puzzle is parking (nice alliteration, huh?).
George Washington University is building a new freshman dorm, Potomac House on F Street, set to open this fall with
...a common room, a television lounge, the building's laundry room, a bike storage room and a yet-to-be-determined food venue.
I would've loved a bike storage room when I was in college. I had one bike stolen, one back wheel stolen and always had to deal with my bike being exposed to the elements 24-7. Not that bikes can't be stolen from the storage room, but I suspect crime will go down.
The U.S. Green Building Council includes bicycle storage as a means to get 1 point in their rating system.
Alternative Transportation - Bicycle Storage & Changing Rooms - 1Point
Reduce pollution and land development impacts from automobile use.
Provide secure bicycle storage capable of serving 5% of all building users (measured at peak periods) and provide convenient changing/shower facilities (within 200 yards of the building) for 5% or more of the maximum full time equivalent shift occupants.
Potential Technologies & Strategies
Design the building with transportation amenities such as bicycle racks and showering/changing facilities
The LEED Rating Systems are based
on a point system. LEED for New Construction is based on a 69 point
system and projects earn points for incorporating green features, which
will determine the level of certification the projects will receive.
There are four progressive levels of certification: Certified, Silver,
Gold, and Platinum. Certified = 26-32 points
Silver = 33-38 points
Gold = 39-51 points
Platinum = 52 or more points.
The LEED Rating Systems are based on a point system. LEED for New Construction is based on a 69 point system and projects earn points for incorporating green features, which will determine the level of certification the projects will receive. There are four progressive levels of certification: Certified, Silver, Gold, and Platinum.
Certified = 26-32 points
This has extra importance since a bill was introduced in Montgomery County that would require large office buildings there to get a score of 20 using the LEED rating system.
Buildings near public transportation earn one point, supplying bike storage and cyclists' changing rooms another. Composting toilets, which involve no flushing, earn points, as do fume-free paint and carpet, ample natural light and using wood from forests where trees, and tree harvesters, are well managed.
While I too prefer incentives to mandates, I think it's a good idea to use the national standard and allow the developers to decide how to get their 20 points - or 24 if they want an energy tax rebate. The system should be fluid so that developers rewards are in line with their score, otherwise we're going to get a lot of buildings that just do the minimum and do we want to be the kind of people who just do the minimum? I mean look at Brian; he has 38 pieces of flare on.