Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Bikes: Rodriguez Shiftless street fixie with S&S couplers, Kuwahara tandem, Trek carbon, Dolan track
I would think that a REAL bike-friendly place would not necessarily have racks out front; the subtext is "leave your bikes outside!" No, a real bike-friendly business would invite you to bring your bike inside, maybe hang it up on a hook, or leave it in a secure alcove inside the place. When I was living in Oakland, CA, there was a pub in Berkeley where you could go in with your bike and hang it on the ceiling while you had drinks.
I like bike shops where - although they've got racks outside - they expect you to wheel your bike inside and lean it against the counter, or they have racks inside the shop (and if they're smart, the racks are for sale). In Vancouver, such a place is La Bicicleta!, down the street from Mountain Equipment Co-op on Broadway. Mountain Equipment (MEC) has lots of racks outside, and they even have U-locks you can borrow to lock up your bike.
At the opposite extreme, Costco has no bike racks, or the bike racks are located the length of the store/warehouse (a mile or so) from the front door. We need to start parking cargo bikes near the doors just to see if they start accommodating us...