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I rented a bike locker at the Glenmont metro station late last year and didn't have to go through the same hoops. I just called a number and left a voicemail with my mailing address. About a week later I received a letter stating the cost (about $70 for the year) and a contract to sign. It's a shame if they're making it more difficult for customers. It really is an affordable and safer option for bike parking.

I rented a locker at Shady Grove a few years ago and it was easy peasy, but Metro never called me back after I left them a message more recently.

When I got my locker at Medical Center Metro, it took nearly 2 months before I got my key, starting from the day I sent my request for availability for a locker at that location. An online automated system for availability and reservation is the only way to go - especially since Metro ALREADY has an online system on their website to purchase items using a credit card. It's really not hard to add a locker payment to that existing system.

When I was considering renting a house in Falls Church 3 months ago, I sent an email asking about locker availability at EFC. I never heard anything back. (Admittedly, some of my yahoo mail does not seem to come through.)

I got a locker this month (December 2007) at East Falls Church metro. Try at the different phone number left on Akua John's number in your email. I discovered that Akua is no longer at Metro but the program has not fully been transitioned to someone else. Still I got a locker, just took some additional trying. It should not take as much effort but alas Metro is not always perfect.

Good news, in the recent round of fare hikes, bike locker fees were not increased.

Has anyone else had their bike locker given to somebody else, while their contract was still in effect? It happened to me and to one other person I know. I now have posted a sign in my locker that pleads with anyone who opens the locker and finds my bike to call me rather than toss out the bike--which is what the station attendant may tell you to do if you find a bike in "your" locker.

Seriously, if you open your locker and find a strange bike there, your locker may have been given to another person. Please leave the bike and call Metro--but good luck getting through to the bike program number.

No I haven't heard of this. It sounds like a breach of contract to me. How can they do this without taking your key away?

Easy--they forget to enter your contract information into their system so they don't know you have a contract or the key until you send them a copy of the signed contract you have. Because there is no record of the contract in the system, the locker shows up as being available, and they give another copy of the key to the next person who asks for a locker. If it happens to you, they will apologize and give you an extension of the contract--but you risk losing anything you have in the locker.

And, believe it or not, another colleague just had a problem with his Metrorail bike locker. He arrived at the locker to discover the lock had been changed. (And, no, his contract had not expired.) So, for three office colleagues with lockers, here's the tally so far in 2008:

One of us had her locker given to somebody else.

One opened her locker to find a bike in it, and was told by the station manager to toss it out. (Another case of one locker being rented to two different people.)

One arriving at his locker to find the lock had been changed.

It's enough to make one decide to get a folding bike and taking it on Metro! If you have a bike locker, I suggest putting a notice in it that asks anyone else who gets it to (1) please be kind and leave your bike in the locker and (2) contact Metro about the problem.

The demand for these secure bike lockers must be growing. I recently inquired about a locker at the Takoma Station and they put me on a waiting list behind 15 people. It would be interesting to find the recent growth statistics of those who are biking to the metro since the price of gas spiraled.
On a side note, Jackie Pierce is the new coordinator and she said they would eventually convert to an online locker fee system....though of course there was no mention of timing.

Metro is just incompetent and Jackie Pierce is an idiot who doesn't know anything. When my friend tried to secure a bike locker, it took months to get any sort of reply, and when she received a reply, it was for the wrong station! When we reached Jackie Pierce, she could not provide any information or explanation and constantly "umm"ed and "err"ed throughout the whole conversation. Mind boggling....She then said she would look into the matter and call back, but didn't. I heard (from internal Metro staff) that the lack of proper staffing, failure to establish a way to streamline payments (they request a check or money order, but take months to process), and just plain apathy and unprofessionalism keep a needed program from being successful. Did anyone know that Metro owes thousands of dollars in fees to customers who have either cancelled their lockers or paid for a locker but never received a locker assignment? Why isn't something being done about it?

Sounds like WMATA isn't terribly competent. I wouldn't make too much of the lack of response to Steve's email. In my experience, that is the kind of letter that simply doesn't get a response. Why? Who knows? Perhaps it gets forwarded to a supervisor, or public relations, or the legal department. Perhaps it just sits in the recipient's inbox while s/he ponders how to defend an admittedly stupid and indefensible policy.

I have learned that such letters, while letting me blow off steam, are probably counterproductive.

Counterpoint: GREAT Service I metro from Brooland station and was able to secure a locker there with excellent efficiency. Of course, since I metro'd I offered to stop by metro main (chinatown/Gallery Pl) to exchange money for key. Ms. pierce and her staff were more than helpful. Brookland being brookland, my first bike locker was routinely micturated upon and Ms. Pierce (and her staff) promptly found another enclosed locker for me available- when I e-mailed her with the issue (about 7 days start to finish). Of course- I did all this in Dec/Jan when not too many people were biking or asking for lockers. I cannot find fault in WMATA bike locker program. Now- I just wish the "bike station" had a little forethought and provided more than 150 slots. Not really worth the $3M and don't get me started about wmbt completion. I just wish there was more "secure" bike parking in general- we had our saddles ripped off today downtown.

Metro proposed hiking bike locker rates to $200 per year. See the article I linked my name to.

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