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more bike boxes are coming to a cleveland neighborhood near you

Some creative, outside-the-box thinking by the city's leading urban design and cycling advocates has led to the creation of four additional "bike boxes," which are to be installed this spring in various Cleveland neighborhoods.The newest wave of bike boxes are modeled after a successful pilot project at Nano Brew in Ohio City. That installation transformed a steel shipping container into a colorful curbside bike garage for two-wheeled visitors.By offering secure, covered parking in a bike corral that also functions as dynamic, placemaking public art, the Bridge Avenue bike box does more than simply provide practical parking: It brands the city as a place that prioritizes cycling."It's really a center of gravity," says Greg Peckham, Managing Director of LAND Studio, the nonprofit that spearheaded the project with Bike Cleveland. "It's as much about a safe, convenient, protected place to park your bike as it is about making a statement that cycling is an important mode of transportation in the city."Peckham says that Ohio City's bike box is very well used on days when the West Side Market is open and in the evening when riders coast in for dinner or a drink. With the street's bike racks often at capacity, the bike box was critical, he says.The new bike boxes will be installed in time for Bike Month in May. The locations are Gordon Square (a barn-red beauty outside Happy Dog), Tremont (two "half loaves," as Peckham calls them, outside South Side and Tremont Tap House), St. Clair Superior (location TBD) and a final, undetermined community.The bike boxes are being custom-fabricated by Rust Belt Welding, which is an entrepreneurial duo that has made creative bike parking a calling card for their work. Each of the boxes is being designed with neighborhood input -- hence Tremont's half-boxes, which amount to a shipping container split in two.The project is being supported by Charter One Growing Communities, which has also funded retail attraction efforts in Ohio City, downtown and St. Clair Superior.Peckham says the new designs accommodate more bikes and use lighter colors. Users can expect more innovations in the future -- LAND Studio is working to secure funding so that green roofs and solar panels can be added to the boxes.The bike boxes are being maintained through partnerships with neighboring businesses, which agree to maintain, clean and keep secure the facilities

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