Bike cellar silliness

32 posts in this topic

Thought I'd cure you all of your suspense. As I said, this is not a real legal issue, and I did not expect universal sympathy on this, and I also expected at least one reserved towel comparison joke. Check and check. Anyway, I'll give you an update at the bottom.

 

On 11/30/2017, 5:22:01, RAMBO said:

Why don't you just buy a 2nd cheap bike lock, and when your bike is being used attach it to the slotted rack to prevent someone else taking the spot while your out.

In fact, I have done this. 

 

On 11/30/2017, 4:44:38, lisa13 said:

It's a communal space, with no reserved parking.  It's just that simple.  The fact that you have lived there longer, or use your bike more, or whatever, does not give you special privileges or entitlement. 

 

Moving someone else's bike to clear a spot for yourself without getting their permission first?  That is obnoxious as hell.

Of course I realize this. But if other residents consistently give passive shrugs to the "communal space" without any spirit of community, it seems sort of moot to me. In case everyone missed it, the building is mostly pensioners (and most are fairly nice). It's those darn youngins!

 

It might be obnoxious, but that's because I'm just beyond the point of caring. Someone will take "my" spot for their bike that will then sit there unused for weeks on end. It has resulted (in past months) in not getting a spot for my bike. I know, I know... big whoop. But here we are.

 

On 11/30/2017, 5:42:10, yourkeau said:

And you have time to put the bike down the cellar every day? I am impressed.

Yup. Killer quads AND biceps. But actually the cellar is on the same level as the main entrance, just a different door. There is no -1 level.

 

On 11/30/2017, 5:42:10, yourkeau said:

If I were you I would ask the Hausverwaltung for some kind of outdoors parking permit at least for workdays, so that you only need your cellar Friday to Sunday. Maybe buy some outdoor racks, for use by other tenants as well. Then maybe fewer people would occupy the cellar.

Our Hausverwaltung basically told us we're on our own. He said to see if we can work out a system with the other residents -- that's what we've done.

 

On 11/30/2017, 5:42:10, yourkeau said:

Bike theft is a thing in Germany, but the situation is not so bad that you need to put it in the cellar every single day. In fact, leaving at the backyard with one wheel locked does the job just as fine. With the parking rack, even better.

The layout of our building doesn't allow this. There's literally nothing to lock it to that's anywhere near the entrance. I prefer not to leave it out in the elements, and it is nice enough to be a theft target...

 

On 11/30/2017, 6:05:55, lisa13 said:

As has been pointed out, you have no earthly idea if those bikes are "used" or not, and it's immaterial anyway.  The spots are for parking bikes. Bikes are parked in those spots.  That's it. 

Well, I have a pretty darn good idea. When it's rainy for days on end (northern flatland Germany hello) and every other bike is bone dry, covered in spiderwebs, and not to mention my James Bond tricks -- it's pretty obvious which bikes are used or not. I am in the bike cellar literally every. single. day. A shepherd knows his sheep. My wife and I: every day. A few other bikes: occasionally. Some old folks: only on summer Saturdays when they go to the market. Every other bike: almost never. Some are rusty, flat tires, seem to have not moved in the years we've been there.

 

On 11/30/2017, 6:05:55, lisa13 said:

If those open spots are just as good, what's to stop YOU from using them? 

 

come on. ffs on a stick, listen to yourself.

I'm beyond the point of caring, you see. That any spots at all are free are ONLY because WE did something about it. A few nice residents did clear their bikes away (late October/early November), leaving the spaces free. This is only recently in the last few weeks. Call me whatever, but I do feel just a touch entitled to benefit from my work/organization. And FWIW, all the pensioners I've talked to about it have agreed with me. Now I'm not doing it only for me, but I'm not that selfless. Buddha can reincarnate me as a hagfish, whatevs.

 

On 11/30/2017, 8:33:27, Petro6golf said:

Im sure this is illegal and someone on here will complain about my suggestion but have you ever thought about asking for forgiveness and not permission in this case? If the bike is an old rusty pos with flat tires that no one cares about/sees/rides or is really aware that it is there, why not take it to the local dumpster in the dead of night and be done with it? Yeah I know... other peoples property. Just a suggestion. 

It has crossed my mind. ;) Honestly some of the bikes surely ARE abandoned. As I wrote, some residents already told us this was probably the case like 3 years ago... Half-senile old folks in poor health move out, and their kids/movers don't think about the forgotten rusty old clunker in the basement.

 

On 11/30/2017, 9:52:22, mako1 said:

1. Stack up unused used bikes in some forgotten corner

2. If asked, claim to know nothing about it

Also something I've done a few times -- I put the CLEARLY unused bikes in one corner.

 

On 12/1/2017, 11:21:13, toBnruG said:

Absolutely. Just because you wrote a polite letter to people asking them to remove unused bikes and label their preferred places, does not give you any right to repeatedly move other peoples bikes just because they parked in the most convenient place.

Did it anyway. :lol: It's actually not the most convenient place, even among the bike racks. It's just "my" space. Others have parked their bikes by the doors or in a couple other nice niches -- those are actually nicer. And just to be clear, this was the recommendation from other residents. I was talking to one the pensioners in the building and she shrugged and said "eh, just do what I did, put your name on a spot". Two were already doing it, they said we should just do it, and one more has since done it after us. Ordnung muss sein.

 

On 12/1/2017, 11:21:13, toBnruG said:

It actually irks me to read your text describing that there are free places available and yet you still have the audacity to move somebody else's bike out of your favourite spot and put a post-it note on their saddle!

Again, they are only free since a few weeks ago because WE did something about it. This is a new development, and tonight for example they are not free. I believe the two WG-dwellers have visitor's bikes there. I'm not quite anal enough to police that, and again -- there's nowhere else nearby outside to park 'em.

 

On 12/1/2017, 11:21:13, toBnruG said:

By the way, I was driving to work today and there was this car going around the roundabout but I know for a fact that I use that roundabout way more than he does so I drove out in front of him, as was my right - at least the way I see it, 'cos as I said I use that roundabout all the time - and he beeped his horn at me. What a prick. Next time I see his car, which will probably be in a few weeks because he drives so rarely and is old, and thus has less authority than me, I'm going to place a politely written post-it note on his windscreen reminding him that I really prefer to have right-of-way on the roundabout because I use it so often... :ph34r:

 

On 12/1/2017, 11:23:47, bennetn said:

What kind of sign should I put up to reserve the car parking spot under my balcony in the street?  Yeah, I know all the residents can use the spots but that one is mine, I mean it's right under my balcony.

You both made me chuckle, but it's really not the same.

 

On 12/1/2017, 1:17:23, theGman said:

I don't get why people have a problem with alderhill. He's asking nicely. Regardless of people rights, it's just common courtesy. We live in a 6 party Wohnung with about 8 bike slots in the cellar. It's all couples in the building, some with kids, and therefore a solid 12 or so bikes kicking around. One of the families put their bikes in their parking space as they do not have a car. I very rarely use my bike so I just put mine in the cellar. Everyone is happy. I'm not gonna use up a bike slot all year round just because I can...that's called being a dick.

Thank you. That's basically my point. Saying its communal space is fine and dandy but kinda meaningless without the community courtesy.

 

I didn't do anything about it for a long time. I also just sucked it up and lived with it, but then I realized 

 

On 12/1/2017, 1:25:04, phranco said:

My "bike spot" is near the back of our bike room, even though, I'm also probably the one who uses his/her bike the most in our building.  I actually chose that one so that I would have less contention, but I wouldn't go moving someone else's bike if they parked it in "my spot".  I might leave them a friendly note, though, asking them to park elsewhere.  I do feel a certain "attachment" to "my spot" even though I know full well that it's not actually mine.  But I would definitely not go as far as to think about legal options ...

Again, it's not REAL legal options I'm looking for -- rather just how to handle it in a reasonable way.

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dude.  you are saying, on the one hand, that people who *don't use their bikes* keep taking "your spot".  How exactly does that work?  I mean, for them to take "your spot" they'd have to be using their bikes, and after returning home, they'd want to return them to the kellar, right?

 

or are you suggesting some total weirdo is stalking the bike parking area just so they can move their totally "unused" bike to YOUR spot as soon as it's empty?  If you believe that, take heart that they are sad pathetic souls who's only purpose in life is to passive aggressively piss you off?

 

I don't think there is any reasonable way for you to handle this.  Moving other people's bikes is just going to piss them off and escalate your problem.  Maybe just start parking in any available space, like most people who USE their bikes do, and be glad you have a bike kellar at all?

 

 

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1 hour ago, lisa13 said:

dude.  you are saying, on the one hand, that people who *don't use their bikes* keep taking "your spot".  How exactly does that work?  I mean, for them to take "your spot" they'd have to be using their bikes, and after returning home, they'd want to return them to the kellar, right?

 

I'm referring to the times (not every day, just occasionally) when they DO use their bikes. And actually it's mostly just one bike (upstairs neighbour), sometimes a second or third, but those way less often (because again they mostly sit unused). In other words, 95% of the time I am able to put my bike in "my" spot no problem (as I was able to do for ~3 years 100% of the time. Call me a territorial, but...). The bikes I have moved (again, not an every day thing), I'd bet they don't even really remember where they put it one way or another. Just one guy really.
 

1 hour ago, lisa13 said:

I don't think there is any reasonable way for you to handle this.  Moving other people's bikes is just going to piss them off and escalate your problem.  Maybe just start parking in any available space, like most people who USE their bikes do, and be glad you have a bike kellar at all?

That's why, after talking to the Hausverwaltung and some other residents, we decided to put name tags on a slot. 

 

Again, this problem would be moot if the ~20 never used bikes were removed. We've got 15 rack spots for ~30 bikes. 
 

On 12/1/2017, 10:55:49, bennetn said:

people reserving bike slots.  They're the ones I'd aim to put my bike in each and every time.

Yea before this situation, I'd have thought much like you. At first, I thought labeling a slot for a bike spot was, for me, just a touch spießig or whatever, and when other residents first suggested I thought "oh hell no", but here I am. :)

 

So update: I talked to the upstairs neighbour the day after I posted. He was the one I was having the little bike-moving contest with. I think we were 2-2. I'd previously met him in the elevator and chit-chatted a few times (he obviously is not one for chit-chat). He's mid-20s (I'm mid-30s), some kind of workman/Azubi, doesn't seem too bright, but at least fairly quiet apart from when his friends come over to get drunk and watch football and then plaster our elevator and doors/hallways with football stickers (this has happened twice, last time about 40-50 football stickers absolutely everywhere in the elevator and on people's doors -- ).

 

Anyway, knocked on his door and asked about the bikes. His first reaction was to lie/deny he knew anything about any moved bikes. I continued anyway and reminded him that we sent a letter a while back explaining the problem (too many bikes for too few spots), and after talking with the Hausverwaltung (who told us to figure it out ourselves, basically) and other residents, we decided to put name tags on. He made a couple little sarcastic jokes at first while I was explaining ("oh yea, who do you pay for them?" almost told him he could pay me). Told him again he's free to put his name on a spot as I and a few other residents have done, that we're just trying to make a little Ordnung. He didn't object to anything or say too much at all really. Seemed to be OK, said "alles klar" and closed the door. My obvious Anglo accent clearly threw him off a bit (my last name looks like it could be German though it's not, and it always confuses people who see my name before talking to me). Haven't had any issues since, though I'll note his bike has been in the same spot since late last week. It's chained to a second unused bike he has -- THAT bike is one of those that has not moved in months, if ever. 

 

So for now it seems resolved... 

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As a regular cyclist, I feel quite a bit of sympathy for Alderhill. Thankfully I don't live in communal space any more, but I can remember such frustrations. People who cycle 6 weeks a year don't really get what it's like for everyday, rain or shine cyclists. Imagine if there were 8 car parking spaces in front of your building and 4 were permanently occupied by rusted old cars from the 1980's. Would you just accept the situation or would you want to do something about that? Or if a neighbour parked his caravan and three-months-a-year convertible on two of the communal spots?

 

Honestly I don't know what sort of people buy €1,000+ bicycles that get used 6 times a year and then permanently occupy a bike stand without any thought for regular cyclists. Probably the same people who abandon bikes at the train station and wait for the city to organise and pay for their disposal. We're living in a society here!

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For a long time on Weissenburgerstr. Munich someone parked their bike trailer on the sidewalk. It was a bit narrow there and the bloody thing was always in the way. It was there so long people used it as a trash bin. The owner, instead of moving it, put a mean note on it saying it was not a garbage can. I think that bugged folks because it was after that overflowing with garbage. I guess he/she believed they had the right to monopolize 50% of the sidewalk. Annoying, but typical. 

Finally it was removed and this year Munich put all kinds of new bike racks on the street. The racks have big signs explaining the bikes will be removed if they are not used/moved after they are tagged by the city. I also don't get the forgotten bikes thing. 

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6 minutes ago, mako1 said:

Munich someone parked their bike trailer on the sidewalk.

That's quite common

 

people used it as a trash bin.

That seems like a really friendly way to deal with neighbours ... default_rolleyes.png.20acbe7c6cb29bb597e

 

I guess he/she believed they had the right to monopolize 50% of the sidewalk. Annoying, but typical.

Of course they had a right to park their bike trailer on the sidewalk.  Where would you have them park it?  On the street?  In the narrow hallway inside the building so it's a fire hazard?  Carry it up/down the stairs and through door jams that it doesn't actually fit through?

 

Finally it was removed and this year Munich put all kinds of new bike racks on the street.

So you don't mind when the city decides to monopolize 50% of the sidewalk?

 

 

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We got a nice balance going on in our -1 bicycle storage shed.

We have 3 people actually using their bikes. And enough room for 3 bikes next to the 7 bikes which don't get used (5 bikes covered in cobwebs and whatnots and 2 bikes belonging to my- and a neighbour's partner which receive upkeep).

7 bikes neatly piled right on top of one-another and 3 standing on their stands. And my reserve bike in an actual storage space.

 

And then every 3 months or so someone needs one from that pile and thinks themselves entitled to place it back on a kickstand.

 

 

Odd thing is that we had a clearout after the latest of the current occupants arrived and still 2 bikes have been added to the pile. I mean, new (to the storage, definitely not new-new) bikes have been added and since we've placed them in the pile they haven't moved in 2 years . . . .

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It is all a bit silly but just wondering, if everyone (or every unit) decides to reserve a spot then you'll be ok with only taking one spot out of the possible 15?  As it is you're already reserving double the number of spots allocated to your rental unit.

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2 hours ago, phranco said:

 

 

Of course they had a right to park their bike trailer on the sidewalk.

 

Doubtful, public path and all. And not for months on end. There are places bikes are suppose to park, I assume trailers should be there also. Doesn't fit? Why is that a public and not private problem? Hinterhof.

 

2 hours ago, phranco said:

 

 

So you don't mind when the city decides to monopolize 50% of the sidewalk?

 

 

 

Read harder. The bike parking is in the street (as stated)  a very busy commercial street. And no, I don't mind.

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11 minutes ago, mako1 said:

Doubtful, public path and all.

Doch.  Take a look at the scurge of  obike's everywhere in Munich.  The city can't stop them because you are allowed to park bikes pretty much everywhere.

See, for example, this link.

http://www.sueddeutsche.de/auto/abstellen-von-fahrraedern-wo-parken-erlaubt-ist-und-wo-nicht-1.2397571

 

Quote

Read harder. The bike parking is in the street (as stated)  a very busy commercial street. And no, I don't mind.

Gotcha

 

 

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16 hours ago, Noel Furlong said:

Honestly I don't know what sort of people buy €1,000+ bicycles that get used 6 times a year and then permanently occupy a bike stand without any thought for regular cyclists. Probably the same people who abandon bikes at the train station and wait for the city to organise and pay for their disposal. We're living in a society here!

 Gah, now you got me started on the Hbf bike racks. That's where I ride to every day (week days at least) as part of my commute, and so it's a other place I'm at twice a day. 9 times in 10 you can forget about having an actual spot in the racks. Whether 6 am on a Monday or 10pm on a Wednesday or Sunday afternoon, it's the same thing. There it's even more obvious that a large portion (50% or more) are not used on a regular basis. I get that people leave them there while they travel or for daily commuting, but still I could point out at least a dozen bikes (BESIDES those weather beaten, falling apart, baskets filled garbage) that haven't moved in months, some for over a year. A few have shrubs growing through them, or leaves and garbage bunched up beside them. One has a gel seat that's totally rotten, rusty frame, flat tires, break/gear cables torn out, broken lights, AND a removal tag, AND it's sitting under a "do not park bikes here" sign. The Hbf/DB "Sicherheit" must pass it every day while smoking or going to the adjacent McDs. I should take a picture... it's been there for at least a year that I know of for sure.

 

The city has only once put on removal tags, but it was a joke because owners were given 6 weeks to do so (long enough to rip the tag off and go on leaving it there), and after this date, many still sat there for months after with their removal tags fluttering in the wind.

 

14 hours ago, bennetn said:

It is all a bit silly but just wondering, if everyone (or every unit) decides to reserve a spot then you'll be ok with only taking one spot out of the possible 15?  As it is you're already reserving double the number of spots allocated to your rental unit.

I guess we'll cross that bridge when we get there, but I really doubt it will happen. Two other spots are reserved by a pensioner couple (the ones that did it first). Other have "reserved" various little niches in the hallway the cellar is connected to. I once put my bike beside another in the hallway (no other space) and the next evening (it was a Saturday), there was a post-it with a lot of exclamation marks saying "don't throw your bike in front of mine, put it somewhere else". There are 18 units in the building, probably 35-40 actual humans in the building. Maybe once the older gens move out and more young people replace them (the trend), it'll be different but that's a decade or more away and we won't be here that long.

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Go by the main train station in Amsterdam or Copenhagen and you will see thousands and thousands of bikes. But they control more often. I think Amsterdam has a multi story bike parking facility.

 

Here in München they have on a nearby busy commerical street started (Weißenburgerstr ibid). tagging the unused bikes on brand new bike racks. Hopefully they remove them if they are unused. Business owners don't want want the abandoned bikes in front of their shops and they can probably pressure the city to remove them in good time. (The sign says they store them for six months before auction  so there is plenty of time for folks to rescue the SchrottRad).

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