Making it More Difficult to Steal Bikes

bike theft

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Cycling has many advantages, but bike theft remains a sadly common drawback. Over 500,000 bikes were stole in in the UK last year (that’s one every minute, factoid fans), and less than 5% of those were recovered. Of the 17% of cyclists that experience bike theft, 66% cycle less often and 24% stop cycling altogether. So what can be done?

Nesta, an innovation foundation based in the UK, is currently running the ‘Hands Off My Bike!’ challenge, calling on people from across the country to design breakthrough innovations to make it more difficult to steal bikes. With bikes more difficult to steal, Nesta believes there could be an increase in the numbers of people cycling in the UK.

The rules surrounding the competition are quite open, simply asking for ‘innovation’. So this could be as straightforward as a new design bike lock, or as complex as a high-security bike parking facility. But their needs to be an element of tangibility to each idea as the winning entry will be the one that requires the longest time to steal the bike.

Entries will be also judged on their impact on the environment, cost and potential for commercialisation and/or implementation at scale. There is a £50,000 prize for the winning entry, and it is open to any individual or organisation. So if you think you’ve got a winning idea, click here to find out more and submit your entry. The closing date is the 18th January 2013. Happy innovating!

Image via gloom