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Brooklyn Cafe Pushes for Bike Parking on Bustling Franklin Avenue

By Sonja Sharp | September 26, 2012 7:43am | Updated on September 26, 2012 10:56am

CROWN HEIGHTS — Cyclists in Crown Heights could soon have more space to lock up their rides.

Community Board 8 heard a joint proposal by the Department of Transportation and the owners of the 728 Franklin Avenue cafe Little Zelda Tuesday to transform a single city parking spot into rack space for several bikes.

The so-called bike corrals have been cropping up across Brooklyn — including on Wyckoff Avenue in Bushwick, Smith Street in Carroll Gardens and Fifth Avenue in Park Slope — as a solution for frustrated cyclists in areas where sidewalk racks fill up fast and every fence and pole is already occupied. 

"We first heard about the program through a neighbor," said Little Zelda's Kate Blumm, who co-owns the cafe with her husband, Michael de Zayas. "We were observing how much cycling there seemed to be on Franklin Avenue, and once we read about the program it seemed like a really a nice fit for the neighborhood."

The pair has already gathered about 200 signatures in support of the plan, Blumm said.

Though the Department of Transportation declined to comment specifically on the Franklin Avenue rack, the agency has called the design "a great solution for places where demand for bike parking outstrips the available sidewalk space."