Dozens of bikes seized

Dozens of bikes seized

Critics fault officials for taking away scores of illegally parked bicycles from streets and call for more parking spaces for bikes

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A bike is seized outside Tai Wai train station.
A bike is seized outside Tai Wai train station.
Photo: Johnny Tam/SCMP
Dozens of bikes were taken away in Tai Wai last week after they were found parked at illegal spots.

The seizure took place last Thursday morning on Mei Tin Road, outside Exit E of Tai Wai MTR Station. About 20 officials from different government agencies were deployed to remove bikes.

There are three official parking spaces for bikes outside the station. Bikes parked next to signposts, roadside fences or wrongly parked at specified spots were taken away in the morning crackdown.

"It's nonsense to say 'Park to the right of the pole', but make it illegal to park your bike to the left," said Martin Turner, chairman of the Hong Kong Cycling Alliance.

He faulted the authorities for not taking into account the fact that there had always been a shortage of bike parking spaces.

In the New Territories, it is common for people to ride a bike to train stations.

This green alternative, Turner said, should be supported, especially if the "illegally parked" bikes are not blocking roads or causing danger.

About 40 more bikes were removed in some locations in Sha Tin on the same day. This year, 434 bikes had been taken away in Sha Tin by the end of March.

There are 5,600 bike parking spaces available in Sha Tin. But cyclist Chan Kin, who rides to Tai Wai MTR Station every day, said he could never get a parking spot.

Owners cannot reclaim their bikes once they have been removed. Those bikes will be stored on government land in Sai Kung and then auctioned off to scrap metal dealers.

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