The bicycle thief

City takes the lead in ‘snatchings’

Editorial Staff
April 5, 2007

Local cyclists have recently voiced adamant protests against the city’s policy of removing unclaimed or badly parked bicycles from the centre. Many argue that the 8,500 bike racks available throughout Florence simply do not meet the needs of the city’s 18,000 bike riders. What’s more, cyclists are required to pay anywhere from 125 to 170 euro in fines and towing fees before reclaiming their towed bikes. But fees are only partly to blame for the 2,000 plus two-wheelers currently abandoned at the city’s bicycle deposit. Italian daily, La Repubblica, reports that  95 percent of bikes removed from the city centre are never reclaimed because San Lorenzo a Greve is an inaccessible location for people whose primary source of transportation is pedal power. Also many ‘victims’ believe their bikes to have been stolen rather than towed.

 

City councilors are currently searching for a more viable solution to this dilemma. According to councilman Claudio Del Lungo, Florentine officials are intent on finding a bike deposit closer to the centre, a move that would considerably cut towing fees down to about 70 euro. One possible option is Stazione Leopolda. Officials are also considering building a bicycle parking lot under the SMN train station.

 

If you want to check whether your bike has been towed, call the Municipal Deposit at 055/783882; specify location and day of disappearance as well as a description of your bike.

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