The city of Columbus has proposed building a permanent bike shelter in front of Cup O' Joe, 627 S. Third St., north of East Sycamore Street and less than 100 feet from the No. 8 COTA bus line.

The city of Columbus has proposed building a permanent bike shelter in front of Cup O' Joe, 627 S. Third St., north of East Sycamore Street and less than 100 feet from the No. 8 COTA bus line.

The German Village location is part of phase two of the bike-shelter program, which is in the discussion stage, said Rick Tilton, the city's deputy director of public service. It is one of approximately nine sites being considered.

"We don't know when we're going to make a decision," he said. "It probably won't come for several weeks. There's no guarantee we're going to do it at the location in German Village."

City officials are in the midst of implementing phase one, which has 10 bicycle-parking sites across the city, including COSI and The Ohio State University campus. That phase should be done by the end of this year.

The cost per shelter, which can accommodate 10 bicycles, is $25,000 in the first phase, Tilton said. It could be slightly more expensive in the second phase, which should be completed by the end of next year, he said. The 8-by-18-foot shelters have no walls but are covered by peaked roofs.

The bike shelters are part of the Bicentennial Bikeways Plan, which proposes general guidelines for bikeways on streets and rights of way, Tilton said. Each site must pass a few preliminary criteria: The sidewalk must be wide enough to accommodate the shelter, the area must be a destination for cyclists and the shelter must be secure and visible, Tilton said.

Any plan would have to go through the German Village Commission, the local architectural review board. Jay Panzer, chairman of the commission, said no plans have been submitted yet, but the city has made two informal presentations to the board.

Tilton said public meetings would be scheduled in the near future.

Mike Yarbrough, president of the German Village Society board of trustees, said allowing residents to comment on the design would be a helpful part of the process.

"Obviously, we are concerned about the integrity of the atmosphere and architecture in German Village, especially down Third Street," he said. "So, I think that communication is under way and will be productive."

Carl Jacobsma, co-owner of the Book Loft, which is next door to Cup O' Joe, does not like the thought of a shelter near the front of his store.

"I think it's a bad idea," he said. "I don't like it at all. First of all, it will inhibit people's view. I think it degrades the look of the front of the businesses down here."

Jessie Mathews, Safe Routes to Schools manager for the local Consider Biking office, said she's in full support of the South Third Street bike shelter.

"The more visual we can make biking here in Columbus, the better," said Mathews, a German Village resident. "I see more and more people biking and parking in German Village."

gseman@thisweeknews.com

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