Last weekend Downtown Grand Rapids, Inc.
installed four of five new public bicycle repair stations in select locations throughout downtown, a key priority for 2015 as selected by the organization's citizen-led Alliance for Livability and part of the organization's larger efforts to create a more walkable, bikeable downtown core.
"It follows an outgrowth of our bike-friendly investments," says DGRI Mobility Manager Bill Kirk, who cited new bike parking on the sidewalk and street as the catalyst ushering in a new age of bike-ability in downtown Grand Rapids. "It just adds another option to people who are biking for commuting purposes or recreation in general, the resources for basic repairs, that you can do that without going to find a bike shop."
The stainless steel, public repair stations include a stand to hold the bicycle, basic bike repair tools, and an air pump to inflate tires to give cyclists a quick and convenient way to perform basic bike repairs and maintenance such as changing flat tires, making brake adjustments or fixing a derailleur.
Kirk says each station also includes scannable QR codes, which link to an instructional webpage via the user's mobile device, with additional instructions for using the repair tools for those with less experience.
"We did a little bit of research on all of the different types of stations," says Kirk, adding that they eventually settled on the model manufactured by Bike Fixation
, which at a total project cost of $6,800 was purchased through local vendor Cycle Safe
, with funding provided by the Grand Rapids Downtown Development Authority. "Based on what we found in other cities these seemed to be the most reliable, most durable."
Chosen by DGRI's Alliance for Livability to accommodate both recreational and commuter cyclists, the location of the last bicycle repair station has yet to be decided, but the four installed last weekend are located outside of Founder's Brewing Co., the Downtown Market, the Seward Avenue Bike Facility at Lake Michigan Drive and the corner of Louis St. and Monroe Ave.
"We view it as a piece of the whole puzzle as it relates to bike friendliness," Kirk says. "We're just happy to offer another way for people to use bikes in the city."
For more information, visit www.downtowngr.org or www.bikefixation.com/products/public-work-stand.
Written by Anya Zentmeyer, Development News Editor
Images courtesy of Bill Kirk/Downtown Grand Rapids, Inc.