Cyclists can look forward to working in a bright new space
Cyclists can now benefit from long-awaited renovations at Bike Edmonton’s North Community Workshop. Formerly known as Edmonton Bicycle Commuters Society (EBC) and BikeWorks North, the organization completed renovations at the beginning of November and reopened on Nov. 14 to host a weekly program called The Spoke.
“We’ve completely changed the layout in here, we’ve basically flipped it,” explained Coreen Shewfelt, manager of Bike Edmonton’s two community bike shops. “Probably one of the biggest changes is the bike cage, the bike hanger. This allows us to store a lot more bikes on the premises.” The bike cage has 113 hooks on sliding metal tracts that hang bikes from their back wheel, freeing up floor space and allowing them to accept more bikes. This will give customers more options to choose from.
“We pay rent in this shop by selling bikes. So, having more selection of bikes will help with the sustainability of the shop,” Shewfelt added. “We really wanted to stay in the neighbourhood, because there is a real dearth of services as far as bike repair and getting bikes in the neighbourhood. And there are a lot of people who use bikes as their primary form of transportation.” This was a huge reason why they decided to refresh the shop and stay in the area.
“We wanted to make the space work better for us, to get more out of the space. And ever since we had renovated our south shop, we had some new ideas there. Like the bike hanger and how to be more efficient with the space,” said Shewfelt. “It’s been an ongoing learning process.” The space was also getting run down and they needed to clean out some clutter.
The bike cage is now where the workspace used to be, and the workspace is where the bikes used to be stored. This switch has allowed them to have more workstations and the ability to store more bikes. The team also moved where they store their parts, which improved the flow of the workstations.
The lighting is better, too, making for better lit workstations. Other ways the organization decided to brighten up the shop was by adding more sheets of corrugated metal in the bike hanger and by painting the interior walls and the floor.
Volunteers Alex Hindle and Andy Caine made a large wooden desk for the entranceway. Behind the desk are display hooks fastened to the outside of the bike cage from which volunteers hang new and used items for sale, such as bike tires, inner tubes, handlebars, brake pads, tools, and other necessities. Behind the hooks is a wooden shelf displaying tubs filled with even more items for sale.
“A lot of the materials we used for the renovations were donated as well. There is actually quite a bit of stuff in here that we got from Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC) last year when they moved,” Shewfelt explained. The bike hanger, the work benches, and the bench at the entrance all came from MEC. Volunteers did most of the work.
They changed their name to help differentiate from other organizations. “There’s a lot of other places called BikeWorks that [don’t offer] the same services as us,” Shewfelt said. But, Bike Edmonton still offers the same services as before, just in a more efficiently laid out shop.
Bike Edmonton’s North Community Workshop
9305 111 Ave
Tuesday & Thursday, 6-9 pm
Saturday & Sunday, 1-5 pm
Featured Image: Volunteers built a desk for the entryway. | Stephen Strand