NEW PUBLIC R16 Road Bike – Win One

April 26th, 2013

We are excited to introduce the first ever PUBLIC city road bike. Taking inspiration from classic and vintage steel framed road bikes, the PUBLIC R16 is a stylish 16 speed lightweight bike designed for the modern commuter and weekend recreational rider. We will have the R16 in stock by late May available in three sizes… Read more »

-->

We are excited to introduce the first ever PUBLIC city road bike. Taking inspiration from classic and vintage steel framed road bikes, the PUBLIC R16 is a stylish 16 speed lightweight bike designed for the modern commuter and weekend recreational rider. We will have the R16 in stock by late May available in three sizes in black, cream, and green. But before we make these available for sale to the general public, we are giving two away to lucky winners. The R16 is priced at $1195 with a special introductory price of $999 this spring.

2 WAYS TO WIN A PUBLIC R16

1. Share the contest with a friend by entering their email address here.

2. Share the contest with your friends on facebook. Get three friends to sign-up and qualify to win.

If you’re already on our email list, then you are automatically entered into the contest. Everyone who enters the contest opts-in to the PUBLIC email list. Deadline to enter is June 1, 2013.

PUBLIC Photo Contest Winners

April 1st, 2013

We celebrated the launch of PUBLIC WORKS with a photo contest. We asked contestants to explore the same theme we asked of our PUBLIC WORKS designers – interpret the concept of "public" with a vision to reclaim urban streets, sidewalks and spaces for walking, biking and other social purposes. Many excellent and provocative photos came… Read more »

-->

We celebrated the launch of PUBLIC WORKS with a photo contest. We asked contestants to explore the same theme we asked of our PUBLIC WORKS designers – interpret the concept of "public" with a vision to reclaim urban streets, sidewalks and spaces for walking, biking and other social purposes. Many excellent and provocative photos came in and our team selected favorites. Thanks to all the participants.

 PUBLIC Choice and People's Choice winners won a new PUBLIC bike. We gave out several second place prizes and highlighted honorable mentions. Read on to hear why we selected them with comments from our staff.

PUBLIC Choice Grand Prize Winner
Photo credit: Manuel Acosta



”This is a unique composition that lends itself to a variety of provocative interpretations. Bikes can lead us to unknown destinations like Alice going down the rabbit hole. This photo also makes us think differently about our built environment, and it’s a very elegant black and white study in form and texture.” – Rob from PUBLIC

PUBLIC Choice Second Prize Winner
Photo credit: Ian Tuttle

“Wow. There is so much about this photo that we love. The perspective. The contrast of shadow and hazy yellowish light. The silhouettes of people sharing this public space together, especially the adult holding a child’s hand. And the crack leading to somewhere seemingly far into the distance, but perhaps close by. The crack reminds us of Andy Goldsworthy’s art, like the continuous crack in front of San Francisco’s deYoung Museum.” – Dan from PUBLIC

PUBLIC Choice Second Prize Winner
Photo credit: John Keller

“I did think it interesting the bicyclist had a rooster rather than a bell… It gives a whole new meaning to playing chicken!” – John Keller

“Everyday urban life gets interesting when you throw a rooster on a bike. It reminds us to stay open and playful about the possibilities of how we reclaim our concrete cities. Bikes, chickens, sidewalk cafes, murals, parks and guerilla gardens all contribute to more livable cities that enliven community connections. Keller’s composition sensibilities remind us of Norman Rockwell with a 21st century twist. Ride on rooster.” – Sally from PUBLIC

PUBLIC Choice Second Prize Winner
Photo credit: Erin Scheopner

“Albert Einstein on his bicycle is a recognizable image for bicycle enthusiasts. You can see joy in his smile underneath his famous moustache. It’s common lore that Einstein came up with the theory of relativity while riding a bike. His famous statement, “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep balance, you must keep moving” is often quoted. But when you place a familiar image of Einstein on a bright red telephone booth, you instantly have to stop and take notice. Public art enhances our civic life and this particular image makes us think: Albert’s hint: Riding a bike + Telephone Booth = Teletransportation.” – Noelle from PUBLIC

People’s Choice Winner
Photo credit: Ana K. Gracia

PUBLIC Choice Honorable Mention
Photo credit: Eric Fernandez

PUBLIC Choice Honorable Mention
Photo credit: Dustin Goodwin

PUBLIC Choice Honorable Mention
Photo credit: Patrick Beyer

PUBLIC Choice Honorable Mention
Photo credit: Carlo Pellegrini

PUBLIC Choice Honorable Mention
Photo credit: Gareth

PUBLIC + Good Vibrations Haiku Contest Winners

August 24th, 2012

PUBLIC + Good Vibrations, with support from Sex+Design, hosted a Haiku Contest around the theme of “Put Something Exciting Between Your Legs.” From July 24-August 20, 2012, we challenged participants to put something exciting in words, or more specifically, in 17 syllables or fewer. The Grand Prize included a $250 PUBLIC bike gift certificate, a… Read more »

-->
Put Something Exciting Between Your Legs

PUBLIC + Good Vibrations, with support from Sex+Design, hosted a Haiku Contest around the theme of “Put Something Exciting Between Your Legs.” From July 24-August 20, 2012, we challenged participants to put something exciting in words, or more specifically, in 17 syllables or fewer. The Grand Prize included a $250 PUBLIC bike gift certificate, a PUBLIC Farmer’s Market Picnic Basket, one-year subscription to Sex+Design Magazine, and a $50 gift card and goodie bag of mixed delights from Good Vibrations. Five runner-ups received prizes too.

Download the full list Haiku Contest Winners and Honorable Mentions.

Grand Prize Winner

Kim V. – San Diego, CA

take me for a ride – i’m yours
but don’t forget we need
milk and eggs

Five Runner-Up Winners

Amber S. – San Francisco, CA

Skirt too short,
I pedal down your street
hoping you will peek.

Daniel K. – Sioux Falls, SD

Soft seat snug in crotch
Riding fast over grooved roads
What good vibrations!

Christina F. – Denver, CO

Swollen tires circle
Flashing fast in tandem with
Finger flicking gears

Edwin Z. – San Francisco, CA

One speed or eight speed.
It doesn’t matter how fast –
only that we go.

Ben B – Columbus, OH

leaning on a tree
two bikes await their riders
doing it outside

Ride a Bike, Write a Poem, Win Prizes

July 24th, 2012

What do riding bikes and writing poetry have in common?  Not much and everything. They both can be a lot of fun. They both can ask you to look at the world a little differently. They both inspire you to take a different route just for pleasure. Haiku poetry and bikes are an especially good… Read more »

-->


What do riding bikes and writing poetry have in common?  Not much and everything. They both can be a lot of fun. They both can ask you to look at the world a little differently. They both inspire you to take a different route just for pleasure. Haiku poetry and bikes are an especially good pairing because they are both about economy and simplicity. They both can get us to pay attention and to smile a little more.

We teamed up with our pals at Good Vibrations for a Haiku Contest with the theme of  “put something exciting between your legs”. Give it a twirl. Prizes range from PUBLIC goods and gift certificates to Good Vibrations goodie bags of mixed delights. Submit entries between July 24 and August 20. If you are in SF come to the Party on August 23 at our Mission District store (599 Valencia) from 5:30 – 6:30 pm. After partying at our store we’ll move down the street to Good Vibrations (603 Valencia) to hear Sexologist Dr. Carol Queen will give an educational and inspirational tour of the store.

SUBMIT A HAIKU

What is a haiku?
Formally the haiku must use exactly 17 syllables arranged in three lines of 5, 7 and 5 syllables, like this:

World is vast and wide.
So much out there to explore.
Right now, let’s eat lunch.

There are some famous traditional ones from Japan where the genre began:

No one travels
Along this way but I,
This autumn evening.
By Matsuo Basho

A sudden shower falls –
and naked I am riding
on a naked horse!
By Kobayashi Issa

And some famous modern ones like this from Ezra Pound, IN A STATION OF THE METRO that many of us studied in high school.

The apparition of these faces in the crowd:
Petals on a wet, black bough.

Apparently he took some liberties with the haiku form. We encourage you to do the same and join us in the contest.  See more details or spread the word to your friends about our Haiku Contest via Facebook.

 

Ultimate Bike Shop Challenge

July 13th, 2012

Are you a member of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition? As many of you know, we founded PUBLIC with the belief that bicycles are an important part of a healthy, livable community. Good design, when applied to a bicycle, can inspire more people to get on bikes. But the best way to encourage more people… Read more »

-->

Are you a member of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition?

As many of you know, we founded PUBLIC with the belief that bicycles are an important part of a healthy, livable community. Good design, when applied to a bicycle, can inspire more people to get on bikes. But the best way to encourage more people to get around by bicycle is to make our city streets more accessible and safer for the everyday bicyclist.

Clif Bar PUBLIC Bike

Kudos to the SF Bicycle Coalition for transforming many streets in San Francisco into safe places for bikes, including The Wiggle, Market Street, and Valencia Street. Look at some of the work they are currently doing with Connecting the City. This is why PUBLIC supports the 12,000+ member SF Bicycle Coalition  – and why we’re participating in the Ultimate Bike Shop Challenge with other local bike stores to see who can sell the most SF Bicycle Coalition memberships during the month of July.

If you’re already a member of SF Bicycle, thank you for investing in an organization that works to connect the city with safe, comfortable bikeways.

If you’re not a SF Bicycle Coalition member yet, you can join now for $35. Your membership will get you the Urban Bicyclists’ Survival Kit, a one-year subscription of SF Bicycle Coalition”s Tube Times newsletter, free bike trailer rentals, free admission to select events, and discounts at many local establishments – and you’ll help PUBLIC win the Ultimate Bike Shop Challenge!

UPCOMING SF BICYCLE COALITION EVENTS
Seven Hells of San Francisco Bike Ride

Seven Hells of San Francisco Bike Ride

On July 21 join fellow masochists on this ride over some of the steepest hills in the city. Two years ago a PUBLIC team member rode the Seven Hells ride on a PUBLIC M8 – and climbed 25-30% degree hills without walking. It was tough but it proved that you can climb just about any hill in the city on a PUBLIC. Read more about the Seven Hells ride. RSVP here.

Better Market Street

Improve Market Street

Most of us ride on Market Street. To make Market Street into a world-class boulevard, the city needs to make the street more bicycle, pedestrian, and transit friendly. We encourage you to attend upcoming community meetings about Market Street’s future.

Name That City. Win Big Bucks.

January 23rd, 2012

You can often identify a city by the everyday goods seen on the streets: the people themselves, clothing style, food stands, taxis, architecture, sidewalk materials, mailboxes, doorstops, etc. If we looked closely most of us could infer from these three photos, which came from Austin, Milan, or Copenhagen. Can you identity a city by the… Read more »

-->

You can often identify a city by the everyday goods seen on the streets: the people themselves, clothing style, food stands, taxis, architecture, sidewalk materials, mailboxes, doorstops, etc. If we looked closely most of us could infer from these three photos, which came from Austin, Milan, or Copenhagen.

Can you identity a city by the bikes found on the streets?
We took photos of bikes in a city we visited recently. Each bike has a some clue to the city. Identify the city and send your response to contest@publicbikes.com. We’ll randomly pick from all the right answers and award a $100 merchandise credit.

Richard Risemberg won our Greenest City Contest because of his persuasive argument that NYC is the greenest city today. “There are various metrics that can be used to evaluate the greenesss of city. Because NYC has the lowest carbon emissions per capita, NYC deserves to be at the top of the ratings."

Parklets, Prizes, & Promos

January 4th, 2012

Our local newspaper, the San Francisco Chronicle, rarely elevates issues of design and architecture to the front page. But last week (December 29th), that’s where you could find Urban Design Critic John King’s Streetscapes column (photos above). Billed as “a mini tour of tiny parks” around the city, the article is more than just a… Read more »

-->

Our local newspaper, the San Francisco Chronicle, rarely elevates issues of design and architecture to the front page. But last week (December 29th), that’s where you could find Urban Design Critic John King’s Streetscapes column (photos above). Billed as “a mini tour of tiny parks” around the city, the article is more than just a guide – it even gives information on how to get your own parklet approved and built in San Francisco. Our friend Deep pioneered the first residential parklet on Valencia Street in the Mission District.

John King is probably best known for his book Cityscapes, a compact guide to 49 buildings in San Francisco, many of which are eclectic and unique and not to be found in standard tourist guides. King delights in the unexpected, which we think is a pretty good way to approach buildings, streets, people, food, and life in general.

You would expect to see coverage of this topic here in our newsletter, PUBLIC Opinion, where we have featured parklets in the past. But the fact that King is getting front-page attention is not only a tribute to his journalistic chops but also proof that the question of how to make our cities more livable and sustainable has become a mainstream issue. The Chronicle and the many activists, like Deep, that expose the broader public to these “pedestrian” issues deserve a thank you for educating us about issues relevant to a city’s modernity, civility, and sustainability. It got us thinking about this issue:

What is the greenest city in the US and what makes it so?
San Francisco, like many US cities, likes to toot its green horn and would love to be considered the most sustainable city in the US. We might be the recognized national leader in “parklets,” but parklets alone do not make a city green. What does make a city sustainable? How do we measure it? That’s a heated and somewhat elusive question, and there are lots of opinions. We’d like to hear yours.  A $100 merchandise credit will go to the best response.

P.S. Congratulations to Deep & Kimberly, who graced our catalog as a PUBLIC model, on their New Year’s Eve engagement. We wish them many years of happiness together on and off a bicycle.

P.P.S. John King has numerous excellent articles on urban design that are archived on SFGate.  He occasionally lectures around town and you can follow him on Twitter.

Visualize Space

October 24th, 2011

Our culture greatly values ‘space.’ We nest in our remodeled homes on our porches and decks, relax in our landscaped gardens, and work in our organized offices.  We enjoy public spaces too ­– parks, promenades, squares, stadiums, beaches. Our National Parks are cultural treasures. We care about these ‘spaces’ and take pride in their condition… Read more »

-->

Our culture greatly values ‘space.’ We nest in our remodeled homes on our porches and decks, relax in our landscaped gardens, and work in our organized offices.  We enjoy public spaces too ­– parks, promenades, squares, stadiums, beaches. Our National Parks are cultural treasures. We care about these ‘spaces’ and take pride in their condition and appearance.

But when it comes to our street spaces ­– where we all spend so much of our time ­– we share a collective blind spot. Our aesthetics break down completely. Why do we settle for ugly, car-impacted streets as our means to get from our well-tended homes to our well-tended offices?  Every time we drive into town and park our car (SUV or Prius) on the street, we are perpetuating a situation that one would think we would all find intolerable. Why does this persist?

Here are some of the usual explanations:

  • Most modern cities were designed and laid out to serve the needs of cars, not people.
  • Gas and parking are cheap.
  • Our love for convenience trumps all else.
  • Many of us are stuck without other options.
  • We are creatures of habit and changing behavior is painful.

What can get us to think and behave differently?
We posted the photo above on Facebook and it generated a lot of feedback. We’d like more. To keep the conversation going, we’re soliciting more comments and offering a $100 merchandise credit for the best response. You are welcome to respond either on Facebook or on our blog.

Elect Visionary Leaders
One way to get us to think and behave differently is to elect visionary leaders in our cities who have the courage to oppose short sighted urban developments.  Mayors have been shown to have significant effect on public space, both here and abroad.  Our heroes range from Enrique Peñalosa (Bogota) to Kramer Mikkelsen (Copenhagen) and Joe Riley (Charleston). We send a special shout out to former San Francisco mayor, Art Agnos who opposed the rebuilding of the Embarcadero Freeway in the aftermath of the Loma Prieta earthquake.  Thus our popular Ferry Plaza and waterfront were reborn, and Agnos lost his re-election bid at least in part for his courage.

Public space is the one place where all members of society are welcome and equal. It is the essence of democracy. Below are a few “street space” shots taken from a recent trip to Cartagena, Colombia. The city was built before the advent of the car and is now preserved by UNESCO decree. The life of the city is all in the streets – day and night – and it feels right.  There is some space for cars, but always subordinated to humans.
Cartagena Streets.blog

 

PUBLIC Photo Contest Winners

August 11th, 2011

We’d like to thank all the friends and fans who submitted entries to our Photo Contest in July. We received over a hundred entries. As with most contests, picking the winners is not easy – many submissions deserve recognition. So we put together a gallery that shows the diverse range of the finalists. A unique… Read more »

-->

We’d like to thank all the friends and fans who submitted entries to our Photo Contest in July. We received over a hundred entries. As with most contests, picking the winners is not easy – many submissions deserve recognition. So we put together a gallery that shows the diverse range of the finalists.

A unique perspective can change the way we view our everyday lives – experiencing the public world from a bike is one way to get a new perspective. We selected our finalists based on the photos that helped us see the world a little differently.

Congratulations to our grand prize winners Colleen McHugh, Jenny Chang, Michael Wang, and Maureen Jacobs. They all win weekend stays at a select group of hotels that feature PUBLIC Bikes.

  • h2hotel in Healdsburg, CA
  • Hotel San Jose in Austin, TX
  • Mondrian South Beach in South Beach, FL
  • The James Hotel in Chicago, IL
  • Ames Hotel in Boston, MA
  • Click on the photos in the left column to view in high resolution. Colleen McHugh’s photo dealt with one of our favorite topics – creative use of public space. It’s a provocative photo from an overhead perspective with fantastic details and light. Jenny Chang got us to consider bicycle shadows – they transform a common sidewalk into a compelling composition. Michael Wang captured a bike taxi in Kota Bharu, Malaysia – a rich assemblage of lights and shapes that asks us to rethink the ways we repurpose objects and personalize bikes. Maureen Jacobs turned a concrete freeway structure into an aesthetically pleasing, modern, and sculptural form.

    PUBLIC SPACE by Colleen McHugh
    Colleen McHugh

    BICYCLES by Jenny Chang
    Jenny Chang

    FUN by Michael Wang
    Michael Wang

    ART by Maureen Jacobs
    Maureen Jacobs

    PUBLIC Photo Contest

    July 28th, 2011

    Check out some of the new photography we are receiving. Thanks for all of the submissions. If you haven’t submitted photos to the PUBLIC Photo Contest, be sure you do by Sunday, July 31st. Prizes include weekend stays at several very special hotels around the US and several $100 merchandise credits. We hope to use… Read more »

    -->

    PUBLIC Photo Contest
    Check out some of the new photography we are receiving. Thanks for all of the submissions. If you haven’t submitted photos to the PUBLIC Photo Contest, be sure you do by Sunday, July 31st. Prizes include weekend stays at several very special hotels around the US and several $100 merchandise credits. We hope to use the photos for a publication and to give you exposure for your work.