"Bike valet" experiment at Barclays Center

It is the ultimate Brooklyn hipster amenity.

One under-appreciated aspect of Barclays Center is the 400-space bike parking racks at the rear of the building. No more. The Nets and the arena are pushing the idea, with help from Mayor Michael Bloomberg and an advocacy group, Transportation Alternatives.

On Wednesday night, it all came together at a concert by The National, a Brooklyn-based indie group. The group's members drove to the arena, where they were greeted by Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

"This just shows you another ways to get around town," he said of the one-night experiment. "It's the newest transportation system that we have in this city."

Transportation Alternatives, under the rubric "One Less Car," provided valet service, locking the bikes and holding on to the helmets, then at concert's end, returning both to the riders. Like a coat check for bikes. About 100 riders took advantage of the free service Wednesday.

Forest City paid Transportation Alternatives. The program was an experiment and no one's saying how it might work for bicycling Nets. It's one thing to bike to a concert in June. It's a different experience in December or January. Still, the valet service may become permanent at the arena, depending on the outcome of the experiment.

It would be yet another way to cut down vehicular traffic at Barclays. An average of 10,000 fans show up via subway and LIRR for games and concerts.

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