McDonald's Cycle Center, Chicago, IL
McDonald’s Cycle Center is a full-service, indoor bike station in the northeast corner of Chicago’s award-winning Millennium Park. Its $3.2 million cost was offset by $1.35 million in Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) Improvement Program funding. After two years of steady use and positive publicity, McDonald’s announced a $5 million grant in 2006 to underwrite the Cycle Center’s operations for the next 50 years. The facility serves bike commuters as well as visitors who want to rent bicycles for transportation, recreation, and city-touring purposes, and provides lockers, showers, a snack bar, a repair station, and 300 secure bike-parking spaces.
The Cycle Center has played a large role in helping Chicago—once named the fattest city in America by Men’s Fitness— become more bike friendly. It is part of Chicago’s ambitious “Bike 2015” plan, spearheaded by Mayor Richard M. Daley and aimed at making the Windy City more accommodating to bicyclists, especially bike commuters. The Center is close to mass transit and downtown Chicago’s many office buildings, providing a large share of commuters with the amenities they need to make year-round bicycling convenient and enjoyable. The results are positive: between 2005 and 2008, bike com- muting increased 55% in the city, and in 2010 Chicago was named one of the top-10 U.S. cities for bicycling.
• 16,448 sq. ft., 300 bike parking spaces
• Design began Aug. 2003, opened July 2004
• 50,000 users in first two years
• City population: 2.9 million
• Center employs 30 people
• 120 solar panels provide enough energy for 100 homes
• City bike commuting increased 55% from 2005 to 2008
• $1.35 million in CMAQ funding
• $5 million grant from McDonald’s for next 50 years of operation
• $3.2 million total cost
View and download a PDF of the project.