This is my local library–the North Portland branch. My family goes to it quite often. Recently the library had additional bike racks installed.
In the past, there were only 2 U-racks on the west side of the library lot, just outside the photo on the right side. For the most part, and for many years, these racks probably served the needs of patrons who rode bikes. However, these racks were not ideal in part because they are placed too close to the wall with barely 18 inches of space between the racks and wall thus requiring non-traditional bikes to stick out.
For a trip the library with my family on bikes, it can be less than ideal. A typical cargo bike in this rack set up sticks out into the sidewalk. I do not like placing my bike where people walk.
Thankfully, someone noticed the need for additional bike parking, possibly due to bikes locked to whatever handrail or sign post was available, neither of which are good choices.
I appreciate the thoughtful development and response to the need for more racks.
The placement of the two new racks is great (seen in the first photo and the one below). They are out of the way of walking paths; they allow open access to the bus stop; they are staple racks; and they provide adequate space for mixed bike types. My cargo bikes fit here. In the past, I locked my bike to the telephone pole (seen in the first photo where the black Bullitt is parked) so that it would not be in a walking path.
These staple racks mean there is a place that will accommodate the size of a cargo bike and provide a secure rack to which to lock.
I doubt that cargo bikes were a conscious part of the planning process. This location is close to the entrance (a need in bike rack placement), out of foot traffic (also a need), and was an open, unused, spot of land. The racks were likely put there due to best use of space.
However, the benefit to cargo bikes (and bikes with trailers) is grand. What I take away from this installation is that future bike rack placements can take into account cargo bikes as a variable when scouting locations and arrangements. If the choice is between spot A and spot B, where spot B can host cargo bikes, choose spot B.
This is not a “new” or “wild” idea, but it can be information for cities when planning bike parking. Given the growth and use of cargo bikes in Portland (both families and businesses), I hope new racks are installed with cargo bikes in mind.