On Thursday and Friday of this week, Vancouver’s new bike registration program, recently launched, continues to visit locations throughout the city. It’s part of an outreach intended to spread awareness about the new initiative, as well as to simply get people registering their steeds, reports say. Doing so is all but a necessity, authorities say.
In a city that sees 2,000 bike thefts annually, as Canadian Cycling Magazine previously reported, a little forethought goes a long way — especially if cyclists want to be reunited with their rides after a worst-case scenario.
The registration and recovery program, the Province reports, has some interesting history. It was designed by J. Allard, formerly a designer with XBox, after his high-end, customized ride was stolen four years ago. At the time, the 20-year XBox veteran was between gigs, considering his next move. With the frustration — indeed, the heartache — of having experienced bike theft first hand, his next project suddenly lay before him.
As a result, 529 Garage, developed by Allard’s Project 529, was born. And Vancouver has become the first city in either Canada or the United States to officially adopt it.
According to reports, the Vancouver Police Department wants to see 10,000 cyclists registering their rides during the next three years, and doing so couldn’t be easier. Registration is done online, it’s free, and it comes with a tamper-resistant decal, the Province says, to discourage would-be thieves from following through with the act. It’s a single database with a single point of reference, and as a result, it’s an efficient, streamlined system, designed to reunite riders with their stolen bikes in record time. Recently, a bike registered through 529 Garage was returned to its owner within thirty-six hours.
To make registration even simpler, the Vancouver Police and Project 529 have been setting up kiosks throughout the city this week. As of Thursday morning, two more registration sessions remain:
Where: Stadium SkyTrain station, Dunsmuir and Beatty.
When: 3:30 pm to 6:00 pm.
Where: Science World
When: 3:30 pm to 7:00 pm.