I know, I know: another Chicago vs. Seattle compare-and-contrast post on Slog. But bear with me, okay? The last time I was home—home will always be Chicago—I took this picture:

chicbikeslocked.jpg

That's a bike rack right outside the Art Institute of Chicago, the museum where you can see this and this and this and this and lots more. Those racks are just steps from the Art Institutes famous—and famously crowded—steps. There's a lot of foot traffic outside the Art Institute on a regular ol' day. On a summer day, the kind of day you might wanna ride your bike down to the Art Institute, the steps and sidewalks outside are mobbed. But if you ride your bike to the Art Institute, you can lock up right in front of the building and head inside. The city encourages you to lock your bike up right outside, the city rewards you for biking to the Art Institute instead of driving, the city slyly incentivizes biking to the Art Institute. It's all very civilized. Now here's a picture I took outside Safeco Field last week:

seabikeslocked.jpg

You can ride your bike to Safeco Field—I did last week to watch the Cubs beat the Ms—and you can lock your bike up outside the main entrance to Safeco Field. But you can't lock your bike to a rack outside the main entrance because there still aren't aren't any bike racks outside the main entrance to Safeco Field. That doesn't stop people from locking their bikes up outside Safeco Field. But instead of locking them to racks, people who bike to the game lock their bikes to whatever's handy: garbage cans, fences, this information kiosk. Locked up bikes outside Safeco are more in the way, and more of an impediment to foot traffic, because there are no bike racks.

If the city of Chicago can instal bike racks right outside the hoity-toity Art Institute of Chicago, I don't see why the city of Seattle can't instal back racks right outside Safeco Field.

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