Will bikeshares cause city’s bike rooms to ride into the sunset?
Bike rooms were once a must-have building amenity, but as more New Yorkers turn to bikeshares, we may see a new real estate amenity trend.
With the arrival of dockless bikes to New York City and Citi Bike’s continual expansion, bikeshares have definitely ridden their way into the lives of countless New Yorkers — and the city's real estate landscape.
The vast majority of residential buildings across the five boroughs offer bikerooms or some sort of accommodation for cyclists. Some take their bike amenities even further. For example, Circa Central Park provides free building-branded bicycles, while The Ashland in Brooklyn offers professionally led bike tours through the neighborhood on select summer weekends.
But as more and more New Yorkers turn to bikeshares over bike ownership, will those amenities change — and will bikerooms inevitably ride into the sunset as a must-have amenity?
“Most commuters in the Big Apple who use bikes to get to their destinations will still need options to store them, but bikeshare popularity may see diminishing spaces in the future,” said Aleksandra Scepanovic, founder and managing director of Ideal Properties Group.
Scepanovic herself used to own a bike when she lived in a bigger building, but she’s since converted to a Citi Bike membership. Even if others follow suite, “I don’t think we’re looking at a complete disappearance of this amenity,” she said.
Scepanovic, however, is already seeing a trend among Ideal Property Group’s clients, particularly historic townhouses in Brooklyn, that are repurposing their bike storage into stroller storage or general storage areas.
So if we do see less need for bike storage, what might become of that valuable space?
“I think down the road we’ll see bike areas turned into communal areas, maybe larger media rooms, gym space, storage space or working space for those who work from home,” Scepanovic said.
With frequent transit woes and the looming L train shutdown — and its weekend shutdowns between now and then — it’s a safe bet that this budding biking trend will be the first of many.