Some cities specify the type of bike racks that are permitted. The city of Denver, CO, for example, has an "equipment standard for bicycle parking areas" specifically spelling out inverted U bike racks as the preferred bike rack. The city of Palo Alto, CA, defines an "acceptable bicycle rack" as "a stationary object to which the bicycle user can lock the frame and one or both wheels of a bicycle with a user-provided high-security U shaped lock (“U-lock”) or cable, and which is either anchored to an immovable surface or is heavy enough that it cannot be easily moved."
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When I go to TJ's in MP, I usually use a tree--which I think meets PA's criteria!
What I always notice about bike racks - not necessarily at T.J.'s - is that they're often set up at the same place where the smoker's hang out. So when I'm fooling around with my bike lock, I got to smell someone's smouldering butt....