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.