New public bicycle repair stations coming to Vancouver streets

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      A group of university students has developed a plan to help Vancouver cyclists make minor repairs while on the go.

      The pilot project, which launches Saturday (April 6), will see public bicycle repair stations installed temporarily at Science World and the Woodward’s complex.

      The two small units will be free to use and each include a set of tethered tools such as wrenches, screwdrivers and tire levers for basic adjustments or maintenance.

      Andrea Sanchez, an SFU student and project organizer, said her four-member team hopes the initiative will eventually expand to ten sites across the city.

      “We hope having bike repair stations will be a common feature offered to cyclists as an amenity to encourage them to use their bikes more often,” Sanchez told the Straight by phone today (April 5).

      The idea to install the repair stations emerged as part of the CityStudio program, a joint initiative of the City of Vancouver and several local postsecondary institutions.

      As part of a semester-long project, the team of SFU and UBC students was assigned to develop an idea that supports Vancouver’s Greenest City 2020 Action Plan.

      Sanchez said the repair unit initiative is meant to align with the city’s target of having most trips made by foot, bicycle or public transit by the end of the decade.

      The students decided to place the stations in easily accessible locations with high levels of commuter and recreational cycling traffic.

      On Saturday morning, the team plans to unveil the repair station at Science World, at the eastern end of False Creek, during a special launch event.

      The Urban Racks unit, slated to be in place for at least three months, will be located near an air pump already installed at the site.

      Early next week, the students plan to unveil the repair station at the Woodward’s complex in the Downtown Eastside.

      The Dero unit includes an air pump and a scannable QR code that will link mobile devices to a website with repair tips. It is slated to be in place for at least one year.

      The students also plan to submit a report to the city on the possibility of installing repair units at additional locations.




      Apr 5, 2013 at 1:37pm

      In before car-dependents start complaining about taxpayer dollars.


      Apr 5, 2013 at 1:46pm

      Well overpriced housing, ridiculous gas prices/taxes is fine as long as well have resources for cyclists, right?
      I mean, if everybody cycles everywhere, then there won't be any wars, everyone will hug and stop eating meat, right?


      Apr 5, 2013 at 1:55pm

      I've been riding a bike for almost 40 years, and I can count on one hand (two fingers actually) the number of times I've had a breakdown while riding that needed an emergency repair (and neither of those times were right next to a repair station when it happened).

      Do these people actually believe that there are people out there not riding a bike because of a lack of repair facilities? Does anyone apply even a modicum of common sense when it comes to this topic? What absolute nonsense. I would hazard a guess that there isn't a single soul in this city that is on the verge of cycling but the only thing holding them back is the lack of repair stations. Not one single person in this entire city. It's a pretty safe bet.

      "The Dero unit includes an air pump and a scannable QR code that will link mobile devices to a website with repair tips"

      More ridiculous nonsense. Why a QR code that forces people to install the app and scan the QR code? Why not simply print the website address? I'll tell you why - because the same idiots that think having a repair station will get people riding their bikes believe that anything and everything MUST have social media/high-tech component. It's silly and it's gimmicky and it's useless. It's being done purely for the sake of doing it. Yeah someone is going to scan a lame PR code with their phone to be taken to a website with repair tips whilst parked at a repair station. Who thinks of this stuff? I'm more than a little embarrassed for you.


      Apr 5, 2013 at 2:10pm

      This just in: Providing cycling resources with two small bicycle repair stations not allowed because overpriced housing and ridiculous gas prices and taxes exist.

      The university students never mentioned wars, or meat eating, or hugs. Wonder where that came from.


      Apr 5, 2013 at 2:14pm

      BLA BLA BLA cars and bikes cars and bikes taxes exercise taxes electric cars, transit, birds fly everywhere, free air, my tires are filled with helium etc etc etc


      Apr 5, 2013 at 2:18pm

      "This just in: Providing cycling resources with two small bicycle repair stations not allowed because overpriced housing and ridiculous gas prices and taxes exist."

      The issue has nothing to do with costs - the issue is how ridiculously unnecessary it is. Who needs an emergency repair station at Science World? Who needs and emergency repair station anywhere? It's something that's being done simply for the sake of doing it. It's not something that is satisfying a demand or filling a need. It's so pointless it's laughable. And anyone that doesn't see that isn't thinking very clearly.


      Apr 5, 2013 at 2:22pm

      GregEh - Looks like it was close. Beat the first one by a mere 9 minutes. Cue the cyclist hate.


      Apr 5, 2013 at 2:36pm

      Now there is more things for vandals to steal and destroy .Why not a drinking fountain that all can use,or a statue that the pigions can use.


      Apr 5, 2013 at 2:50pm

      Jack - these are not "emergency" repair stations- "emergency" is your word. The article states they are "for basic adjustments or maintenance". There are loads of little things that become a lot easier when you have a decent stand, the right tools, and lots of space (things most cyclists probably don't have at home), e.g., changing an inner tube with a slow leak, adjusting seat height, changing brake pads, adjusting brakes, etc. If you make it easier for people to maintain their bikes, you make it easier/ more enjoyable for them to bike, and so they will be more likely to do it and they will do it more often.


      Apr 5, 2013 at 3:14pm

      sorry Julian, but you're simply regurgitating complete nonsense... Let me repeat - NO ONE is sitting on the sidelines not riding their bike because they can't repair it. NO ONE. Therefore the theory that providing repair stations (emergency or not) will increase the number of bike riders is blatently false.

      People have obviously clued into the fact that ANYTHING that can be somehow associated with Moonbeam's "Greenest City" goal is eligible for taxpayer's money, and so you get silly make-work projects like this.

      Tell me - how will the success of this be measured?