BikeBiz: What bikes do you own and where's your favourite place to ride?
Lau: I have around six bikes each for different uses; a beat up fixed gear for going around town, a Boardman road bike for longer rides, a KHS folding bike for commuting, and three other bikes which are in various stages of repair in my garage.
My favourite place to ride is around central London, especially during the rush hour. You get to experience all the sights, sounds, smells of this busy city. I’m amazed by the number of cyclists that are now riding in London.
Tell us about the wooden bike racks seen at Cycle Show:
We are working with a furniture maker from the US who came up with the original idea and we have had a huge amount of interest for this product.
Many cyclists love their bikes and we saw the Bikeshelf as a neat way to store and display your bike in the home. It is a minimalist bookshelf that cantilevers from the wall, which also has a slot for the bicycle frame to be hung from.
What can you do for councils or retailers seeking custom- made bike parking solutions?
As designers we are often asked to create custom ideas and we really enjoy doing this. Every space is different and each site has different parking problems and challenges which we like trying to solve.
As part of our services we can carry out a free site survey or consultation to discuss the requirements. As a team of designers and architects, we specialise in cycle parking design and planning and often come up with creative and practical solutions for our clients.
How flexible are your designs?
Depending on our client’s requirements and budget we can create a wide range of cycle parking designs made to order, including one-off commissions.
For example, we designed a custom bike rack for Lambeth Council that spelt the word ‘LAMBETH’ which were installed at the boundaries of the borough.
We also designed a car-shaped bike rack for the London Festival of Architecture, which has since been a very successful product of ours.
Which councils have you worked with so far?
We have worked with over eighty councils and three hundred businesses across the UK on a wide variety of projects. As we are based in London, we work closely with the majority of the London Boroughs and in particular Transport for London. However, we also work across the UK and have installed projects for councils and businesses in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Ever thought of fitting out a bike shop with custom racks and security?
We would love to design a bike shop with customised parking. Having well designed storage is a great way to display the bicycles effectively and can attract more customers. In addition, we have many shops who are asking for our public repair stands, along with manual or electric bike pumps that can be installed outside for customers to use.
What's next for Cyclehoop product wise – anything in the pipeline?
One of our latest projects was a design we submitted to the Bankside Bikeshed Competition where we were finalists. We designed a mobile cycle parking solution that converted an old lorry into a secure valet bike park for 60 cycles. This is something we are hoping to develop for temporary parking at events and festivals.
Once installed, what after sale services do offer for your on street products?
Most of our products are designed not to require any maintenance, such as our Cyclehoops and on-street bike racks.
However, we do have more mechanical products with moving parts such as our Public Bike Pump and the secure Bikehangar unit. We would offer after sales support and regular maintenance for our clients. With bike lockers and indoor secure facilities we also help to maintain the locks and mechanisms.
We also help manage and run bicycle lockers for councils where we issue keys to the residents who use the lockers whilst providing maintenance on the lockers themselves.