Downtown Decorah will soon have additional parking for bikes.
At its meeting Monday night, the Decorah City Council approved the installation of bike racks on a vehicle parking spot on Winnebago Street off the Water Street intersection near Donlon Healthmart, and another in a parking space on the west end of the 400 block of Water Street in front of the Northeast Iowa Montessori School. A rack also will be installed on Alliant Energy property off the Water Street/Court Street intersection.
The racks on the streets will be in place from May through October, and the one on Alliant's property will stay up all year.
Decorah's Self Supporting Municipal Improvement District (SSMID) is paying up to $1,000 toward the bike racks that are being built by the Decorah High School's industrial technology program.
Randy Schissel was the only Council member voting against the bike racks.
"I think we should exhaust all opportunities for off-street parking before taking a parking spot, which turns over many times a day for patrons who park downtown," Schissel said.
Wanless asked whether changes could be made if there are problems with the bike parking.
"If we find out it doesn't work, then we'll move it or take it out completely," Council member Gary Rustad, chair of the Council's street committee, said.
Ten years ago, bicycles parking downtown wouldn't have been an issue, he said.
"But with the completion of the (Trout Run) Trail, there are more tourists from outside the city and also people who live in Decorah who are riding bikes," Rustad said.
There will be some "trial and error" on where the bike racks will be located from year to year, he added.
The Council also approved blocking off two parking stalls in front of T-Bock's on Water Street Saturday April 27, for bike parking in conjunction with the 23rd annual Decorah Time Trials. Following the mountain bike race, many of the participants gather at T-Bock's, where multiple bikes parked on the sidewalk in front of the establishment have been a concern.