They weren't intended as public art, but downtown Madison's new bike rings are both functional and eye-catching.
They're officially "parking meter pole bicycle parking rings," and they feature the silhouette of a bike and the city's name. They're clamped onto meter posts on the isthmus, especially in areas where multi-pay stations are being placed.
"These are intended for bicyclists to be able to lock their bicycles at parking space poles," says Arthur Ross, the city's pedestrian-bicycle coordinator. They're manufactured by Madrax of Waunakee, a division of Trilary Inc.
"We wanted to make them uniquely Madison," says designer Brian Weeks, who notes it was a collaborative effort. "While they are pretty simple, they convey a positive statement about Madison's commitment to bicycle transportation."
As for the media of our newest street art, the rings are 3/8-inch steel plate, cut with a laser and galvanized. Says Weeks, "It is ideal for bike rack wear and tear." And for the eye.