With bicycle theft such a common crime, anyone who regularly cycles in the city needs to both own a good bike lock and choose wisely when it comes to parking. We've seen lots of innovative approaches to both bike locks – such as the Saddle Lock and Foldylock – and bike racks, such as the Cyclepod and the Next Gen. Loop, from Ottawa-based design consultancy The Federal Inc., is another attempt at improving on the latter.

Loop adds a touch of flexibility to the security offered by all bike racks. Like most other bike racks, Loop is anchored to the ground with a steel base and some heavy-duty bolts. However, the main body of Loop takes a different approach than most other bike racks, using thick UV-resistant rubber.

The Federal Inc. insists this rubber is strong and durable, enough to resist the unwelcome attention of bike thieves. And in case they do cut their way through the rubber, they'll find themselves coming up against a high-strength steel chain lurking inside. This combination therefore ensures security while adding an element of flexibility.

Loop could be adapted into various different designs, all providing the same basic security

The main advantage to this rubber coating is its inability to scratch the paintwork on your beloved bicycle. As an added bonus, it means Loop can be put together in a range of different shapes, sizes, and colors, which would be perfect for a city looking to differentiate itself from its neighbors with something useful for its inhabitants yet eye-catching for visitors.

Loop was unveiled at the recent 2014 Interior Design Show in Toronto. It's currently undergoing testing, with various different prototypes being put through their paces before a final design is settled upon.

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