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Projects Updates for Campus Bike Center

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  1. Weekly Update: iSEE interview, Replenishing bike stock, Working Bikes

    All, With the onset of cooler weather, we have seen a decrease in visitor numbers. But that has also correlated with a decrease in available for sale bikes.

    Last week I had an iSEE student come by to interview me and talk all things bikes, so I’ll be sure to keep an eye out for that story. All publicity is good publicity!

    This week I’ll start counting/sorting bikes for the Working Bikes donation—actual date TBD—including moving some of the keeper bikes to the Bike Center to replenish our stock of B-a-Bs and For Sales.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 72
    Sales: $958.25

    Bikes (refurb): 1 for $135
    Memberships: 14 for $420
    Tires/tubes: 15 for $70

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  2. Weekly Update: BTWD, LTN, Build-a-Bike, very busy this week

    All, Real busy times last week. Shop was manageably busy, but we had BTWD and LTN on consecutive days. Both events went well. I spent more time at the DRES stop than the Bike Center station, which was a new experience. Lots of folks on that route, and I was able to talk route-planning and commuting strategy with some people new to commuting. Weather cooperated swimmingly.

    We had a deluge of completed B-a-Bs last week. Always good to see the smiling faces of rewarded effort. Marketing folks came by and updated some of our filing cabinets and bins with printed (legible) labels and photos of contents to better help people find and identify parts. We’re still slower on Tue/Thurs as we work to get the word out that we’re now open those days as well.

    We’ll work this week on a couple shop builds we’ve been too busy to finish, prep for the abandoned bike giveaway, and clean shop as we’ve been too busy to do much of any of that in the last two weeks.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 86
    Sales: $1,084.30
    Bikes (B-a-B): 3 for $150

    Memberships: 17 for $510
    Tires/tubes: 10 for $59

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  3. Weekly Update: Bike to Work Day and Light the Night this week, Abandoned bicycles

    All, The visitor numbers seem low for how busy it felt this past week. Had a few students step up, volunteer, and enjoy it enough to come back in the last few weeks. That’s always a good sign we’re doing something right.

    I was out Thursday/Friday and my staff handled the Bike Center in my absence. No major issues, so I call that a success.

    We’ve got BTWD and LTN this week, back-to-back days, on Wed then Thursday. Weather looks good (at this point).

    This Friday is the last day for students to claim their abandoned bikes so my staff and I will count the remaining ones that we’ll be able to use. From there, I’ll coordinate with Working Bikes to pick up the rest—potentially as soon as next week. The influx of bikes will be a boon to for our programs as we look to build back stock.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 49
    Sales: $895
    Memberships: 15 for $450
    Bikes (B-a-B): 1 for $50
    Tires/tubes: 15 for $70

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  4. Weekly Update: Open weekdays, BTWD, LTN

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, This week we begin being open the full week (minus Monday for Labor Day). Hopefully we’ll be able to better help folks, as we’ve had lines for stand time most days during our M/W/F schedule.

    We’re out of bikes but have been selling a good number of memberships. I’ll be out on Thurs/Fri but my staff will cover.

    We’ve taken a step back technologically and had good results: Printed membership forms are easier for folks to fill out, take less time, and we have more clipboards than computers which means we can get people working on their bikes sooner. Manually entering the forms afterwards and the environmental toll are worth it during these super-busy times.

    I’ll do some prep on my end for BTWD and LTN next week.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 102
    Sales: $1,865
    Bikes (refurb): 4 for $655
    Memberships: 24 for $720
    Tires/tubes: 22 for $144

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  5. Weekly Update: High demand for refurbished bikes, Dangerous driving behaviour

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, We’re down to two oddball bikes for sale here at the Bike Center. Demand remains high; donations remain low. We’re still helping plenty of folks, though. Visitor numbers support that.

    Had a staff meeting last Thursday and then Friday was quite busy, but we were adequately staffed, which was a welcomed change. Unfortunately, the rest of the days are still in-progress in that department.

    Neil St and Stadium Dr remains an ever-dangerous section of campus as I was victim this morning to a dangerous driver barreling past me—on the right, no less—at the underpass.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 157

    Sales: $2,140
    Bikes (refurb): 4 for $595
    Bikes (B-a-B): 1 for $50
    Memberships: 28 for $840
    Tires/tubes: 28 for $219

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  6. Weekly Update: Student rush, Very high demand for sale bikes

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, The student rush looms this week. We won’t nearly be able to meet demand for sale bikes, nor for helping with DIY repairs with our current staffing levels but we’ll soldier on. I’ve got a couple interviews lined up this week to help on that front and at least one bike donated over the weekend to help with our sales.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 28

    Sales: $1,742.50
    Bikes (refurb): 5 for $1,080
    Memberships: 9 for $270
    Tires/tubes: 17 for $91

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  7. Weekly Update: Refurbished bicycles, Abandoned bikes

    All, We’re quickly approaching zero stock for refurbished bikes. One particularly eager patron bought two of our more expensive road bikes back-to-back last week. Thankfully, we received 3 bikes in very-good-to-great condition that should—fingers crossed—be on the sales floor for Wednesday.

    We’re in the beginning stages of clearing out abandoned bikes. Approximately 200 will go to CBC/TBP so that’ll help our inventory. The abandoned bikes at the rack in front of the bike center were cut this morning, cleaning up and clearing space for folks to lock there. We’ll be better able to see if any donations have been left, as well.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 21
    Sales: $1,646.75
    Bikes (refurb): 3 for $1,025
    B-a-B: 1 for $50
    Tires/tubes: 15 for $113

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  8. Weekly Update: Social Ride, Build-a-Bike

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Two weeks back we received three nicer bikes as donations which have proven to be quick fixes. Visit numbers were surprisingly low on Wednesday but that gave us some time to catch up on the piles of wheels and bikes we needed to strip down for parts. Sunday was the Bike Project social ride. On Monday we had a Build-a-Bike completed—a decent hybrid is a great improvement over a too-small roadmaster!—and on Friday we had another member start a Build-a-Bike.

    Got an interview for a new hire this week, the Bike Project Members’ Meeting tonight, and one more of the nicer bikes to fix up.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 19

    Sales: $800.50

    Bikes (refurb): 1 for $170

    Build-a-Bike: 1 for $50
    Memberships: 8 for $240

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  9. Weekly Update: Build-a-Bike, New Hire, Community Bike Ride on Thursday

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, I was out Mon - Thurs last week sick. My staff covered admirably but, invariably, there are things they were uncomfortable taking on. Just an opportunity for further training! We had one Build-a-Bike be completed and another almost made it out the door at the last minute on Friday.

    On Friday we had a visitor from Danville who is working on an Eagle Scout program rehabbing old bikes and donating them to local charities. We were able to donate 3 bikes and a handful of parts.

    We also had a new hire start on Friday, received a handful of nice bike donations earlier in the week, and will process those donations this week. We’ll also work on getting a few more bikes on the sales floor as we approach August. Or maybe more accurately: AUGUST. It’ll be a doozy of a month.

    On Sunday, July 31st, The Bike Project is hosting a community bike ride, so we’ll let folks know about that.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 18*
    Sales: $499
    Bikes: 1 for $200
    Build-a-Bike: 1 for $50
    Memberships: 1 for $30

    *Likely higher actual #; technical difficulties in my absence.

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  10. Weekly Update: Bike sales, Build-a-Bike, Bike Rodeo

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Business as usual this last week. Still can’t keep enough bikes on the sales floor to meet demand but we have had an uptick in Build-a-Bikes. One B-a-B was finished on Friday and another started the same day.

    This week we are helping out with a Safe Routes to School Bike Rodeo program by providing the basketball courts for their learn to ride course.

    Thanks to Todd for putting a sizeable dent in our scrap pile, as we’ve been getting a lot of non-repairable bikes donated lately (unfortunately).

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 29

    Sales: $862
    Bikes (refurb): 2 for $235
    Bikes (B-a-B): 1 for $50
    Memberships: 6 for $180

    Tires/tubes: 14 for $136

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  11. Weekly Update: Bike sales, Build-a-Bike

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Hope everyone enjoyed the long weekend! We got a load of wheels/tires donated last week that we’ll be working to process this week. We’re up to 5 bikes for sale right now and should have a couple more done by the time we open tomorrow. Had one completed Build-a-Bike, which is always nice. Another person started their own B-a-B project and seems to be enjoying the process.

    This week I’ll make a run to the Urbana Bike Project for some parts/supplies for various bike builds here and hopefully get a few more bikes on the sales floor.

    The numbers:

    Sales: $729.25
    Bikes (refurb): 2 for $300
    Bikes (B-a-B): 1 for $50

    Memberships: 3 for $90
    Tires/tubes: 7 for $82

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  12. Weekly Update: Kids bike give away; Build-a-Bike

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Last week we were able to fix up and give away 10 kids bikes to ISCU (Immigrant Services of Champaign-Urbana). Great to pass along valuable bikes to a valuable cause, and nice to clear some space in the Bike Center. We also virtually sold out of bikes, as we were down to a single for-sale bike on Wednesday. Fixed up 2 more for Friday but that’s likely not going to cut it, so we’ll move to finish a few more builds this week.

    We had one person start on a Build-a-Bike on Friday. Hopefully should be done today or Wednesday.

    Numbers:

    Visitors: 31

    Sales: $1,289.80
    Bikes (refurb): 4 for $$675

    Memberships: 7 or $210
    Tire/tubes: 3 for $24

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  13. Weekly Update: Closed for Juneteenth, Donations

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Short week with the observed Juneteenth holiday on Friday. We’ve steadily been receiving donations but most of them are doomed for the scrap pile. But at least we’ll get some decent parts off them.

    Got a few bikes in the queue that should make the sales floor by end of week.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 22
    Sales: $568.19
    Bikes (refurb): 2 for $215
    Memberships: 7 for $210

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  14. Weekly Update: Donations, Closed on Friday for Juneteenth

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, We’re still working our way through our donations windfall. Open hours have been steadily busy, but it’ll be interesting to see how the extreme heat of the next couple weeks impacts visit numbers.

    We are selling bikes about as fast as we can build them, especially since we’ve been too busy to build much during shop hours.

    This week we will only be open Monday/Wednesday and closed Friday for Juneteenth (observed).

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 31
    Sales: $915.30
    Memberships: 2 for $60
    Bikes: 3 for $595
    Tires/tubes: 7 for $60

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  15. Weekly Update: Bicycle Donations

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, We were closed Monday for Memorial Day and so were only open W/F last week.

    Thanks to the generosity of a local bike shop, we were absolutely inundated with donations—something to the tune of 15-20 bikes. Then two community folks dropped off even more donations. Needless to say, I’ll be processing these all week.

    I dropped off flyers with WRC last week, too, in the hopes of expanding our reach to folks that haven’t already come into CBC.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 15
    Sales: $557.95
    Bikes (refurb): 1 for $180
    Build-a-bike: 1 for $30

    Memberships: 4 for $120
    Tires/tubes (new/used): 12 for $76

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  16. Weekly Update: Grabbing scraps; Safety Checking bikes

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, I was out most of last week and my staff ably handled running the shop in my absence. This week we’ll only be open W/F due to the Memorial Day holiday.

    Thanks to Todd for grabbing scrap over the weekend as we were getting quite full on that. Still have a few more bikes to strip.

    This week I am meeting with a prospective new hire, a U of I dad who is involved with a similar non-profit group in Boise, ID (of all places), and safety-checking a few bikes that’ll help us build our for-sale inventory back up.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 21
    Sales: $1,043.00
    Bikes (refurb): 3 for $550
    Memberships: 6 for $180
    Tire/tubes (new/used): 10 for $77

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  17. Weekly Update: Very busy last week, Reduced hours for summer, bike donations

    All, The semester is over, and the students have left. For summer we’re down to just a couple of folks. And of course, Friday was super busy all day but we were lucky to be well-staff for the last day of the semester as staff report that it remained ASF (All Stands Full) until after close. We’ll see how busy we are this week.

    We’ve reduced hours to M/W/F in accordance with projected diminished demand and staff availability. As we get more staff hired/onboarded and demand is there, we’ll bump hours back up.

    We received 10 direct donations last week with I’d guess about half being students.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 38

    Sales: $854.60
    Bikes (refurb): 2 for $370
    Memberships: 3 for $90
    Tire/tubes: 7 for $61

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  18. Weekly Update: Summer is coming

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Had some rainy weather last week that kept our visitor numbers low. We also had a few staff bow out for the summer.

    This week will be summer-like and judging by the first half hour of open shop time today, we’ll be nice and busy all week. From there it’s on to the summer sessions. We’ll likely reduce hours as demand and staffing availability dictate.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 24
    Sales: $605.60
    Bikes (refurb): 1 for $180
    Memberships: 2 for $60

    Wheels (used/alloy): 5 for $75
    Tire/tubes: 7 for $47

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  19. Weekly Update: New staffer, Friday Rides

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Friday—warm weather and a Friday—meant a busy day. Rest of the week was slower. A new staffer started last week, which was a great help.

    This week looks warmer so we’ll be busier, likely. Will get some bikes finished and do some more onboarding with new staff. We have a weather radio and a regular radio here now to communicate with DCR staff as needed.

    Our Friday Ride events concluded last Friday with a decent showing and a ride to Meadowbrook and back. I’ll gauge staff interest in keeping them going this summer and we’ll definitely look to restart them in Aug/Sept when students are back full-time.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 53
    Sales: $866
    Bikes (refurb): 2 for $340
    Memberships: 7 for $210
    Tubes/tires: 23 for $141

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  20. Weekly Update: Friday Ride, New staff

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Pretty quiet last week. Friday picked up along with the weather. And nicer weather meant our first successful Friday Ride of the season!

    This week a couple new staffers will be starting. As the weather has warmed, we’re seeing an uptick in volunteer interest as well, which is welcomed.

    Tonight is the Bike Project Member Meeting, which I’ll attend.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 39
    Sales: $862
    Bikes (refurb): 3 for $550
    Memberships: $3 for $90
    Tire/tube: 3 for $6.25 (used/new)

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

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