Doctor Popular reminds us how bicyclists often get shafted on BART:
Yesterday a rider cut in front of me as I was boarding the train and she took up this whole seat. There were at least 40 other seats open for her, so I asked if she would mind letting me use that space. “I was here first” she replied. Then I asked if she would at least move her bags so I could sit in the seat next to her while I propped my bike against the wall and she said “I need the whole seat”.
All this seems to come from a general sense of passenger animosity towards people who have the nerve to bring their bikes on board. I’ve had some seriously unsafe rides due to folks not offering up those spots. In a way, it forces you to take up more space and disturb even more passengers.
Doc Pop commenter Colin brings up a great point about how the whole process is flawed:
Note that even in that space the bike wheel sticks into the doorway. Bikes on BART is a kludge.
We are asking BART to allocate space on board their trains for bikes so that they won’t interfere with other passengers and can be stowed safely for the duration of your trip. BART plans to remove seats on 80 of its 500 train cars for a first phase and is expected to modify the rest as funding becomes available.
For many, the commute hours rules (bikes only allowed 8:50am-4:25pm) eliminate the practicality of biking for many daily work commuters. A 2009 SFBC survey of BART riding cyclists confirmed that the commute blackout period is one of the biggest headaches about commuting. No word on if or when lifting this restriction will ever be considered.