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June 14, 2013 6:33 AM   Subscribe

Mechanised Japanese Underground Bicycle Parking Pictures and video of space-saving bicycle parking in Japan.
posted by hawthorne (26 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
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posted by hawthorne at 6:35 AM on June 14, 2013


I could watch that all day! The only thing that disappoints me is that the sides are solid and buried, so you can't.
posted by kjs4 at 6:41 AM on June 14, 2013


"Your bike is now safe from the weather and pranksters."
posted by Brocktoon at 6:42 AM on June 14, 2013


Wow, my city is making a big deal about the tiny step of reserving a small part of a downtown parking deck for bikes.

Seeing stuff like this makes me feel as an American how a citizen of a Soviet Block country might have felt seeing images of the west in the fifties and sixties.
posted by octothorpe at 6:46 AM on June 14, 2013 [11 favorites]


I wish the US was bike-friendly enough to create demand for this sort of thing.

But at the same time, I feel like one of the main advantages of bicycles is their simplicity, their extremely low costs and modest infrastructure requirements. And this sort of thing is a step away from all of that. This is treating bikes like automobiles, when bicycles' advantages are mainly the ways in which they're unlike automobiles.
posted by Western Infidels at 6:56 AM on June 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Very cool! It's a bicycle version of the garage that my car is parked in right now.

The price and capacity imply that it's either heavily subsidized by the property owner, or it's surprisingly inexpensive to install and operate. Fingers crossed that it's the latter because I love it.
posted by grudgebgon at 6:57 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


A vast underground silo, equipped with robot arms and an ethereal lattice of metal struts... to store bicycles.

Also, it's good to know that to be a hipster in Japan you have to have an arial drone in the basket of your retro fixie.
posted by Slap*Happy at 7:01 AM on June 14, 2013


It's a good thing all bicycles are meticulously maintained in Japan (right?)

Put a beater bike with loose / dangly parts in there, and it jams up... oh man.
posted by anthill at 7:01 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


The cost is low because this is the cover for another giant robot silo. Japan is littered with the things, and they subsidize about 70% of public conveniences.
posted by GenjiandProust at 7:12 AM on June 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


So is Tokyo built on an enormous pile of brown sugar? That might explain why construction costs are so low.
posted by shothotbot at 7:12 AM on June 14, 2013


This is the best thing ever.
posted by Mister_A at 7:12 AM on June 14, 2013


I wonder how complicated it is to do item retrieval for things that have fallen off the bike while in robo-transit.
posted by elizardbits at 7:14 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


There must be some sort of access for humans or maintenance drones. I think it's just a matter of summoning the human that'll be a pain in the butt.
posted by Mister_A at 7:23 AM on June 14, 2013


*Casts Summon Human*
posted by Mister_A at 7:23 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


I hope it's done by a fussy little butler robot who beep boops a series of disappointed and judgmental beep boops at you.
posted by elizardbits at 7:26 AM on June 14, 2013 [6 favorites]


This is so great. I hate leaving my bike out on the street for arseholes to jump all over and I've seen how much space they take up in really bike-friendly cities, so it scratches both of those itches for me.
posted by shelleycat at 7:28 AM on June 14, 2013


Tokyo will make for one incredible Time Team episode in another 500 years.
posted by bonobothegreat at 7:56 AM on June 14, 2013


In contrast; parking your bike in NYC's East Village with bike mechanic Hal Ruzal .
posted by R. Mutt at 8:05 AM on June 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


It's a good thing all bicycles are meticulously maintained in Japan (right?)

Yeah, while I'm impressed by the machine, I'm also sort of impressed by the (apparent) homogeneity of the bikes in Japan. I wonder how well it would fare with all the weird two wheeled stuff that we ride over here.

Kind of dig their bikes though. They remind me of the 3 speed schwinn I rode as a paperboy.
posted by Kyol at 8:13 AM on June 14, 2013


I love Bicycle Habitat! Like Hal, I always try to move the post I'm locking to; thieves in Philly are known to go around loosening the bike rack bolts etc.
posted by Mister_A at 8:40 AM on June 14, 2013


Seeing stuff like this makes me feel as an American how a citizen of a Soviet Block country might have felt seeing images of the west in the fifties and sixties.

Earthquake Sets Japan Back To 2147
posted by TedW at 9:25 AM on June 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


A bicycle geo-front!
posted by RakDaddy at 9:43 AM on June 14, 2013


Is it just me or is that Japanese Google Maps view a little different looking than an American one? I can't quite put my finger on it.

This makes me want to move there so badly.
posted by gucci mane at 12:31 PM on June 14, 2013


I think it would handle a lot of non standard shapes quite well. Only uprights, and there will be a wheelbase maximum, but it seems pretty robust overall. Similarly, I don't think state of repair would matter that much, there just aren't that many clearances to worry about. Now a dangling bungy.... That would be a different story :)

$20/month. I don't think... Well, they could combine it with a Bixie type rental service, and that might be enough to make this technology really fantastic.
posted by Chuckles at 1:24 PM on June 14, 2013


Would I pay $20 a month for secure, convenient bike parking that would let me skip the "remove all items from bike that might possibly be stolen" step and doesn't even require me to use a lock and cable? In a heartbeat!
posted by Lexica at 6:31 PM on June 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


Western Infidels: "But at the same time, I feel like one of the main advantages of bicycles is their simplicity, their extremely low costs and modest infrastructure requirements. And this sort of thing is a step away from all of that."

Bicycles only have "modest infrastructure requirements" if the infrastructure requirement of parking space is cheap. Land here in Tokyo is anything but cheap, but this makes pretty damn good use of limited space, so it's actually an improvement in making the infrastructure requirement more modest.
posted by Bugbread at 10:44 PM on June 16, 2013


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