Thursday, August 22, 2013

Racks and Hard Places; The Archer Road Tour, Butler Plaza Part 2

Butler Plaza is a focal point for activity in Gainesville whether you're driving, riding or on foot. For riders security accomodations are less than ideal, but the recent remodeling and upgrading of a portion of Butler has changed that significantly.

The Esplanade at Butler Plaza has actually recognized bicycle riders as potential customers with highly visible U racks spaced regularly along the remodeled store fronts. There are even some suitable flyparking options associated with handicapped access points where bikes could be secured without being obstacles.
Bike parking at The Esplanade at Butler Plaza-McAlisters Deli
McAlisters Deli
Bike security at newly remodled Esplanade at Butler Plaza-Miya Sushi
Miya Sushi
Bike security at The Esplanade at Butler Plaza-near Great Clips
Flyparking at The Esplanade at Butler Plaza-Ada's Clothes Repair, Falafel King and CiCi's Pizza
Flyparking near Ada's, Falafel King and Cici's

I'm sure Publix has good reason for keeping a second store in operation in very close proximity to the one which replaced Albertson's on the west end of Butler Plaza. It was once rumored that it was to become one of their special products stores specializing in natural foods. Nonetheless, special store or not, it's more convenient to local mass transit stops as routes 1, 12, 62 and 75 all stop nearby. Common to Publix are bike racks at both entrances. Unlike those at the former Albertson's these are U racks set in concrete. Both are readily visible with the one outside the east entrance being visible to the ATM security camera, a coincidental and fortunate arrangement.
Bike security at the old Publix at Butler Plaza, west entrance
Publix, west entrance
Bike security at the old Publix at Butler Plaza, east entrance
Publix, east entrance

Crossing SW 35th Blvd which separates Butler Plaza East from The Esplanade brings you to the area dominated by Walmart. Here, also, is the Tax Collector's office and Tag Agency, Firehouse Subs, Bonefish Grill and other business on the west side of Walmart. On the east side of Walmart are Payless, Outback, the GameStop and additional businesses. All of this vast area is served by two bicycle racks. One is located well away and not visible from the main entrance to Walmart.
Bike insecurity at Walmart, Butler Plaza
Bike insecurity at Walmart, Butler Plaza
Bike security at Butler Plaza East, The Game Stop
Outside GameStop is the second rack. Both are inadequate and only the one at GameStop is readily visible and then only from that establishment.

Should better security accomodations be expected at Butler Plaza? Subjectively, yes. Objectively, yes. The changes made to The Esplanade section of Butler demonstrates the viability of peaceful coexistence.

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