|Converting the Masses: How SLC Could Become a Bike Town
||[Sep. 14th, 2006|07:00 pm]
Bike Salt Lake City, Utah
By Lucy Burningham, 8-17-05|
After visiting Portland last week, I returned to Salt Lake City and instantly sensed that something was missing—bicycles. It wasn’t an original observation, I mean what town can compare with Portland on bicycle friendliness, but I still felt disheartened as I rode my Schwinn downtown to run errands. Minus one guy with a mohawk who was grinning as he rode an odd-looking bicycle in circles in the middle of 200 South, I felt alone despite the fact that it was a beautiful Saturday afternoon. There could have been tumbleweeds blowing down the bike lane in front of me.
Then I remembered a very cool organization working to remedy the situation. The Salt Lake City Bicycle Collective is a non-profit that works to promote cycling as transportation by providing refurbished bikes to kids and low-income households among other programs.
Founded in 2002 by five dedicated bicycle advocates, the organization works with the city to offer bicycle safety courses for kids, a community repair shop (located at 2312 S. West Temple) where volunteers teach people how to maintain their bikes, mechanic certification courses and an extensive bicycle donation and refurbishing program. They also encourage community members to make art projects, such as jewelry, picture frames or garden sculpture, using bike parts that have reached the realm of the non-functional.
I first encountered the Collective at the Downtown Farmer’s Market, where you can park your bike in a safe little corral where volunteers will keep an eye on it. And if your machine happens to need a tune-up or tire repair, just ask. The Collective will fix your bike for free while you shop.
I am putting together a Salt Lake City Bicycle Culture handout for cyclists around Salt Lake City, though I want organizations that serve all of Utah. If you know of any.. drop a line.
Josie Johnson 3rd Annual Memorial Ride
10:30 AM on Saturday October 7th 2006
Ride Starts at South Terrace Sugarhouse Park