Responding to yesterday’s post on Ikea shuttle buses causing a stir in Cobble Hill and Carroll Gardens, Streetsblog commenter Lee Watkins reminds us of the company’s Danish bike-share program. As previously noted here, Copenhagenize has the scoop:
IKEA of Denmark is now starting a new concept at their Danish stores. They did a bit of market research and found that roughly 20% of their customers rode their bikes to the stores – even though most of them are located outside the cities in large commerical centres – some call them Big Box Districts – which are located outside the city centre.
IKEA has invested in Velorbis bikes, at a couple of their stores, that will pull trailers so that customers can ride home with the new purchases.
According to Copenhagenize, two Ikea stores outside the city — one of them located 12 miles away — feature bikes and trailers for rent. The Velorbis web site says the bikes are offered for use at no cost (Treehugger puts the deposit at $100 US). As remote as many New Yorkers may consider Red Hook to be, it isn’t exactly a suburb, yet Ikea chose to make room for 1,400+ cars there while forgoing bike accommodations altogether. What gives?
If it works in Denmark, Ikea will reportedly be exporting its bike rental program to other countries. Let’s hope Brooklyn is considered urban enough for the company to give it a try here in the States. (Confidential to Ikea: these folks would probably be happy to hear from you.)