Protection and security are key requirements for ensuring safe and enjoyable environments for people. A well-planned building or property can help establish good relationships with occupants and add long-term value for owners.
Two of the greatest challenges for property owners have to do with transportation: managing traffic safety and preventing bike theft. Both challenges can be addressed, however, with effective planning—and the right hardware.
Vehicle safety and protection
Properties are filled with people coming and going, often in a rush and with a flood of distractions going through their minds. Among drivers, distractions can create significant risks for pedestrians and building occupants threatened by nearby vehicle traffic.
The Storefront Safety Council estimates that vehicles crash into commercial buildings as many as 20,000 times, causing 4,000 serious injuries and 500 deaths, per year. A person injured or killed is an immense tragedy. But even when a driver is lucky enough to avoid hitting someone, the damage a vehicle can cause to a building can be extensive—often leading to high-cost insurance claims and lengthy building repairs that can leave owners and occupants disgruntled and unhappy.
Building entrances are especially vulnerable. Not only are they used regularly by pedestrians, but they're often not designed to withstand vehicle impacts. Even building exteriors that look sturdy can collapse when hit by a vehicle with enough momentum. And, while vehicle accidents are common, vehicle attacks are also a danger. Vehicles make excellent battering rams useful for breaking into stores and stealing valuable merchandise.
Bollards are a simple and effective solution for ensuring the safety of people and property against vehicle collisions. Bollards are essentially small protective posts that stand a few feet above ground. They are small and unobtrusive, so as not to disrupt building visibility or pedestrian flow. Bollards can be installed in front of entrances and along building exteriors near vehicle traffic. Other sensitive site facilities, such as gas meters, storage areas, parking infrastructure or electrical boxes often benefit from bollard protection.
Steel pipe bollards are the most basic form of building protection. Made from structural grade steel, they are designed to withstand significant vehicle impacts. Steel pipe, isn't much to look at on its own, though. A range of cover options exist—from economical plastic sleeves to ornate designs made from cast metal. Non-impact resistant bollards are also available to provide visual barriers and to help guide traffic.
The spaces around us shape community and neighborhood experiences and lifestyles. Cycling is a growing trend in many North American communities—specifically among students and professionals using bikes as their main mode of transportation. In many ways, cycling is an ideal form of transportation. It's fast and energy efficient. It also promotes better health and reduces negative impacts on the environment.
City infrastructure plays a large role in encouraging bike use by ensuring protected bike lanes, signage and other traffic control measures. Building and property managers, however, can also take on a major role in supporting bike friendly communities by providing adequate bike storage in homes and at destinations.
There are a range of bike parking options to suit any building or property. The most basic bike racks are u-shaped or circular, affixing to ground surfaces at two points. Similar to bike racks are bike bollards, which are essentially stand-alone posts with bike-locking arms to ensure secure storage. Bike racks and bike bollards support double-lock configurations that secure the frame and both wheels. They are also non-intrusive to surrounding environments, allowing pedestrians to pass freely. Corral-style bike racks are also useful for storing several bikes in a dedicated space.
For sites with avid cyclists that own expensive bikes and equipment, bike lockers may be an ideal option. Bike lockers offer fully enclosed storage to prevent theft and damage due to weathering or vandalism.
When buying bollards and bike parking products, quality and service is essential to managing efficient site operations. Quality materials ensure products will perform their best in any environment with minimum requirements for maintenance and care. Fast service means you'll have them just when you need them.
Reliance Foundry Co. Ltd. delivers the highest-quality stock and custom-designed products for architectural site furnishings, traffic management and industrial applications. Since 1925, Reliance Foundry has built upon a long tradition of metal casting expertise to become an award-winning supplier for high-profile and everyday needs across North America. reliance-foundry.com