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Projects Updates for Topic: bikes

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  1. Weekly Update - BFU celebration meeting, CBC visitis

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Pretty slow over here as per usual for this time of year. On Thursday and Friday of last week we had a few CBC alums stop in so that was a welcomed surprise. Always nice to see former student staff.

    We’re on the radar and a regular contact for the UI claims office when they’ve got damaged bicycles. Diversifying our donation stream is always welcome—especially when it’s in-house here with the University.
    This week we’ve got a BFU celebration at 2p on Wednesday at F&S. I’ll notify staff to cover open hours while I attend that. I like our BFU silver status and cupcakes, too. Win-win! We’ll continue building bikes and culling parts this week. I’ll be getting the final count on staff availability for next week as it’s nearing finals. Our team will be leaner and meaner, as the expression goes, as we approach the holiday break.
    The numbers:

    Visitors: 57
    Sales: $231.50
    Memberships: 2 for $60
    Tires/tubes: 9 for $63

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  2. Weekly Update - Thanksgiving break, Fix-a-flat

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Looking back to the week before Thanksgiving break, it was about average for this time of year. Not a whole lot to report. Still throwing stuff away as we see fit. Bikes are getting built. One of the student staff put in her resignation as she’s received an internship with iSEE. Always nice to see success for the students here!

    This week we’ll host our Fix-a-Flat class on Friday, Dec 6th at 11am here at the Bike Center. Likely to be poorly attended since it’s December. Otherwise, it’s more of the same: building bikes, cleaning shop, throwing stuff away.
    The numbers:


    Visitors: 66

    Sales: $231.50
    Memberships: 2 for $60
    Tires/tubes: 9 for $75

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  3. Weekly Update - Daily Illini news article, Working Bikes, WCIA,

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Last week was a big press week. We landed on the cover of the Daily Illini on Thursday and then when we did our shipping event on Friday with Working Bikes WCIA showed up!  https://www.wcia.com/news/bike-project-helps-people-in-need/

    Good press all around!

    The shipping event went just about as well as it’s ever gone in my tenure. To start we had 200 fewer bikes to deal with, then Working Bikes provided twice as many staff as they have before, and to cap it off we had good turnout between my staff and volunteers. Unfortunately, volunteer and staff availability isn’t something I can count on every year.  

    For this week, today and tomorrow we’ll have LAS students in to volunteer. Other than that, it’s business as usual. We’re getting into finer and finer details of culling and organizing, getting into some deep cleaning, which I regret isn’t my strong suit but man does it make a difference. Next week we’ll be closed for Thanksgiving break.
    Also, a big thanks to Todd for grabbing scrap over the weekend.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 40
    Sales: $527
    Bike (refurb): 1 or $150
    Bike (B-a-B): 1 for $80
    Memberships: 2 for $60
    Tires/tubes: 10 for $53
    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  4. Weekly Update - Bike Month discussion, Fix-a-Flat, Working Bikes

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Last week was uneventful. Without traffic during hours we were afforded a lot of quality sorting/scrapping time.
    On Wednesday I met with F&S, Urbana/Champaign, and CCB to discuss Bike Month/BTWD planning and to reflect on this year’s Light The Night. We’ve set the date for Bike To Work Day as Friday, May 1st.
    Thursday was our Fix-a-Flat class that was a no-show unfortunately. However, it’s pretty much winter so attendance was expected to be low.
    Big news for this week is that we’ll be hosting Working Bikes again this year to help us alleviate our abandoned bikes problem. They’ll be down this Friday from about 11am – 2pm packing up bikes to take back with them to Chicago. TBP and I will be there on Wednesday to clear out the good ones. I’ve got a couple staffers who said they’re available to help but I’ll put the word out with TBP to see if we can stir up some more volunteers. The more the merrier!
    The numbers:
    Visitors: 67
    Sales: 171.50
    Bike (B-a-B): 2 for $65
    Memberships: 2 for $60
    Tire/tubes: 1 for $5

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  5. Weekly Update - Working Bikes, Fix-a-Flat. Bicycle Food Drive

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Last week was productive! We continued counting everything and made some real progress cleaning up here at the shop. I’ll be doing a walk-through this week with TBP on what to keep and not keep. I went to the bike barn and counted bikes: We’ve got 277 to donate to Working Bikes and 56 to keep. Those numbers are rough counts and not exact. Things are relatively organized over there now. Once we set a date for them coming down I’ll move all the bikes we want to keep out of there. Fingers crossed for an easier go of it this time around!
    This Thursday we have our Fix-a-Flat class at 11am. Doubtful turnout will be great. It is November, after all.
    On Saturday the Bike Project is hosting a bicycle food drive. All donations go to Eastern Illinois Foodbank, and we’ll be promoting that over here at the Bike Center. It’s a fun event I’ve participated in for years. 

    This week we’ll keep paring down our stock and keep cleaning up in advance of our TBD move!
    The numbers:
    Visitors: 61
    Sales: $527
    Bike (refurb): 1 for $170
    Memberships: 2 for $60
    Tires/tubes: 10 for $53

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  6. Weekly Update - Working Bikes

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Steady week, surprisingly. We even had a waiting list one day. Generally, though, things have slowed down. We’re still getting our inventory tallied up. We’ve got 6 bikes for sale with a few more to come.

    Last week I counted and moved bikes around at the warehouse. I’ll be doing more of that this week with the help of some of my student staff. I have reached out to Working Bikes about coming down to collect our unusable bikes. I’ll have a better idea of just how many bikes that’ll be after this week.
    This week we’ll be keeping on with the inventory/pitching junk, organizing the parts we keep, building up the good bikes, and the aforementioned warehouse bike fun.

    The numbers:

    Sales: $318
    Memberships: 5 for $150
    Tires/tubes:  8 for $30

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  7. Weekly Update - BFU status, What to Wear, Build-a-Bike

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Despite the cooler weather the shop was still relatively busy all week. On Thursday or Friday we even had a waiting list.
    In other news, we achieved Silver status for our Bicycle Friendly University! Congrats to all those involved.

    Last Thursday night we had our What To Wear class at ARC. It went well. 3 people stopped by and we covered all there is to riding in colder weather. Thankfully the people who came already had well-equipped bikes for the muck and suck of the winter elements so it was mostly talking details of clothing choice and how much salt/snow/ice can impair the function of your bike. Fun times!
    Also of note was our 3(!) Build-a-Bikes completed last week, two of which were done on Thursday. When that program works, it is empowering like none other. Unfortunately, it’s a big hill to climb.

    Elsewhere, I’ve been having Staff and volunteers count our used and new parts to compile a master list of inventory. It’s tedious but important to be able to figure how much stuff we’ll be moving the new CBC.

    Thanks to Todd for grabbing scrap over the weekend.

    This week we’ll continue to purge and pare down our inventory, build bikes, and keep plugging away at prep for our move.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 96
    Sales: $616.25
    Memberships: 8 for $240
    Bikes (refurb): 0
    Bikes (B-a-B):  3 for $266
    Tires/tubes: 17 for $76


    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  8. U of I promoted to Silver-Level BFU Status

    Associated Project(s): 

    The University of Illinois has been promoted to Silver-level Bicycle Friendly University (BFU) status as of October 17th, 2019, for taking significant steps to address health and environmental challenges by creating safer, more welcoming and accessible areas for people who bike. The U of I is one of 94 colleges and universities with Silver or higher BFU status.

    Some of the university’s recent initiatives that contributed to receiving Silver certification were the publication of the 2014 Campus Bike Plan, bike path and bike lane improvement projects, bicycle rack parking upgrades and additions (11,635 bike parking spaces in 2019), the launch of the Bike at Illinois website, the start of VeoRide bike sharing availability in 2018, and the improvement of bicycle route networks through the MCORE project.

    Dr. Mohamed Attalla, executive director of Facilities & Services, said, “Achieving this well-earned award is due to the dedication and persistence of many individuals within the campus community collaborating to increase bike programs, improve infrastructure, and encourage others to get involved and help reach strategic active transportation goals.”

    See Facilities & Services announcement of this news.

  9. Weekly Update - Bike Maintenance 101, First visit free

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, We’ve slowed down enough to offer the First Visit Free option again, which has its plusses and minuses but is at least consistent with our website/literature on the topic.

    Last week we had our Bike Maintenance 101 class. Three attendees came, despite the cold and rain, so that was awesome. I think all of them had issues with their own bikes that precipitated their interest in the class and two of them said they’d be back to fix their bikes. A success!
    One bike was on the donation rack this morning. Another small bike but of good quality that’ll hopefully fix up quickly.
    I got in touch with someone from the Fine and Applied Arts to see if there’s any interest in using some of our scrap metal to keep it out of the dump but that was a dead end. I’ll still try to think of ways to keep our scrap pile a little smaller since we’re frequently at-or-beyond capacity. I think overall, we don’t have enough venues through which to repurpose a bicycle beyond B-a-B and Shop Builds. Something to think about.
    This week if we’re slow I’ll have the student staff do a deep dive on our used parts inventory to get a better picture of just how many bike parts we’re storing here. Additionally, we have our What to Wear info session at ARC on Thursday evening from 7 – 8p.

     

    The numbers:
    Visitors: 82
    Sales: $677.75
    Memberships: 14 for $420
    Tire/tubes: 14 for $79

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

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