NEW FIND! Okay, it's not really new, and it wasn't my find...I had intended to visit this place a long time ago, last semester when I was first told about it. With school etcetera, I had never gotten the opportunity to venture out. However, a combination of Shar's persuasiveness and the absolutely gorgeous weather got me to ride my bike down to the Arts district (which really just consists of couple blocks located north of the train station) to check out The Velocipede Bike Project! Velocipede is a "collectively run non-profit dedicated to helping people use bicycles as transportation." Cute, right?! It is very cool, actually. Shar was having trouble with her gears, so after getting dinner at Sophi's Crepes, we popped over to the other side of the street. Right on West Lanvale Street, there's a door propped open and you can spot a couple bikes locked to a signpost outside.
The very cool thing about this place is that everybody is helping each other. When you walk inside, there's someone at the door to direct you to a person who will actually teach you how to fix your bike! There are some basic rules to the shop, as follows (from what I could gather...)
A. You can pay a one-time user fee of $5-$10 (depending on the work you need done)
B. You can pay a monthly fee, allotting you as much work on your bike as you need within the month, for $30
C. For every hour you spend getting your bike worked on, you can trade three hours of volunteering at the shop! (This is my favorite option...and if I had the time I'd definitely get on that)
Shar chose to pay a one-time fee, which is really inexpensive if you realize how much another bike shop would cost you (a tune-up usually goes for ~$30. If you need to replace/fix something, it can cost a lot more, though!)
If you want to check out more, you can visit their website: www.velocipedebikeproject.org