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Projects Updates for Campus Bike Center

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  1. Weekly Update: Build-a-Bike; New Hire at CBC

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Bit of a busy week in the books. Still getting regular and steady donations that are a challenge to keep on top of, but it is much preferable to NOT having any donations.

    I had a new hire start on Friday, who did a great job on his first day, considering it was a bit of a trial by fire with how busy we were. He’ll be a welcome addition around here!

    We had our first completed Build-a-Bike since the pandemic, which was also our first semi-fixed B-a-B. I think the person took 2-3 days, or 8-12 hours of labor to finish the bike. 

    A planning meeting for Bike Month is on the calendar for this week. Other than that, it is business as usual.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 23
    Sales: $787.10
    Bikes (refurb): $390
    Memberships: 5 for $150
    Tires/tubes: 14 for $67

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  2. Weekly Update: Bike donations; Kid's bike giveaway on July 17

    All, Last week we got inundated with donations. I counted 8 bikes donated on Friday alone. That doesn’t include wheels, tires, and parts that we received as well. We’ve got nearly half a dozen bikes in the queue that once on the sales floor will free up some space for more donations.

    Our friends at TBP are hosting another Kids’ Bike Giveaway event for July 17th. We have a dozen or so bikes we’ll be able to contribute to that event. That’ll clear up some more space, too.  

    This week I hope to be able to start a new student worker.

    The numbers:

    Visitors:
    Sales: $103.75
    Tire/tubes: 4 for $31

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  3. Weekly Update: BTWD and LTN dates finalized

    All, Steadily picking up around here. Had to pull out the folding stands on a couple occasions. Got a new hire in the works. Dates are set for Light The Night and Bike To Work Day for the fall. On Friday we had a volunteer working towards a membership, which was a welcome occurrence.

    This week is business as usual.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 20
    Sales: $1022.10
    Bikes (refurb): 3 for $500
    Memberships: 5 for $150
    Misc: $58.50

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  4. Weekly Update: Shop cleaning; Bike donations; Juneteenth Freedom Ride; Moonlight rides

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Made some progress last week on the surplus of scrap bikes that we’d been accumulating. Shop is looking cleaner. Thanks to Todd for picking that up this weekend. We got seven bikes donated from Champaign Cycle, which I was able to pick up on the bike trailer. One of those bikes was a very quick fix and is on the floor ready to be sold. We replaced a damaged fork and now the bike is orange and blue—how appropriate!
    I interviewed and began the hiring process for a new student worker.
    The community bike ride season is well underway as there was a Juneteenth Freedom Ride last Saturday and two moonlight rides happening this week—one on Friday and one on Wednesday. We’ll talk that up to any visitors this week.

    The numbers:
    Visitors: 16
    Sales: $508
    Bikes (refurb): 2 for $290
    Memberships: 2 for $60
    Misc: 7 for $41

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  5. Weekly Update: Summer operations

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Getting steadily busier! Sold some bikes, helped some people. A anecdotal metric for busyness: last week was the first time I had to repeatedly and firmly ask someone to leave after we’d closed up for the evening.

    Got the bike trailer fixed up so parts runs are easier. Had a planning meeting for LTN and BTWD last week. Looking forward to those events in the fall. Last week was a hot one, so I was especially appreciative of the A/C in the new bike center.

    Former student worker Eric brought in a trash bag stuffed full of old clothes to use for rags. We’ve been short on rags since the pandemic hit so this was much needed and much appreciated.

    Still short staffed but patrons have been very understanding and in a way that functions like pulling off the training wheels of learning bike repair. Silver linings!

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 14
    Sales: $677.50
    Bikes: 3 for $490
    Memberships: 2 for $60
    Misc: $56

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  6. Weekly Update: Summer hours, bike donations

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Our first week of summer hours was successful! We were steadily busy and able to sell some bikes, accept some donations, and only had one person bemoan our new hours. Yoshi, who volunteered a couple weeks back was able to come lend a hand, which was super helpful.

    This week I’m hiring a new employee who’ll start ASAP. They have loads of experience and will be able to hit the ground running, which will be great. Since the E-week/newsletter blast that Sarthak sent out, we’ve received 12 donations here, so we’re working our way through that stock of bikes; we’ll continue that for this week if it’s slow.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 44 (?)
    Sales: $918
    Bikes (refurb): 3 for $455
    Memberships: 1 for $30
    U locks: 4 for $84
    Tire/tube: 16 for $73

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  7. TED Talk: Eco Edition Series - Bikes

    Thank you for attending another excellent TED Talk: Eco-Edition series discussion all about bikes on 5/26! Sarthak Prasad led a great discussion on Wednesday evening after watching Adam Stone’s TED Talk, “How cycling transforms people and places.” Sarthak’s presentation is attached. Be sure to check out the Bike @ Illinois website for more information about the Bike Center, bike routes, safety, and other helpful resources! You are welcome to contact bike@illinois.edu at any time with questions or feedback.

    Thank you again for attending on Wednesday, and we look forward to seeing you at our next TED Talk discussion in June on the topic of water! Stay tuned for more details by checking out the iSEE Sustainability Calendar and signing up for the newsletter. Have a nice and safe Memorial Day weekend!

  8. Weekly Update: Summer hours, Donations, iSEE Ted Talk

    All, This week’s report is delayed as I was off last week.

    From the 10th – 14th we had some volunteer interest, slightly busier times, and some more donations. Just today we received another batch of donations: tires/tubes, a wheel, and whole lot of jerseys/clothing that we likely will not be able to even give away. I’ll reach out to some cycling clubs and see if they’re interested.

    This week we’ll be debuting our new hours of M/W/F 2 – 6p. These will be our hours all summer, effective immediately. iSEE is hosting a Zoom TedTalk thing on Wednesday and tonight is TBPs member meeting.

    I’ll be understaffed to start the summer as one of my summer workers got an internship and won’t be available after all. I’ll work on drumming up some more help this week.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 24 (I-card only)
    Sales: $565
    Bikes (refurb): 2 for $340
    Membership: 1 for $30

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  9. Donate your used bike to the Campus Bike Center

    Donate your bike! Campus Recreation’s Campus Bike Center (CBC) accepts used bikes. If you are leaving campus and you have a bicycle that you do not need, please donate it to the CBC at 51 E. Gregory Dr, Champaign. CBC refurbishes bikes and cleans them up for reuse. Please consider donating your used bike before leaving campus! Call us at (217) 333-0241. FREE water bottle while supplies last.

    51 E. Gregory Dr, Champaign, IL 61820

    Sarthak Prasad • Facilities & Services

    Donate your used bike to the Campus Bike Center

  10. Weekly Update: Quad Fix-it day, Doing Things by Bike

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Not a whole lot to report from last week. Slow, sales and visits-wise. Picked up some scrap bikes from the warehouse on Friday. On Thursday we had our Quad Fix It Day with one participant for that. Got some new marketing materials/signage for advertising the space. One of my staffers had her last day for the semester and will be partaking in Illini 4000’s cross country bike ride.
    This week another staffer will be leaving for the summer. On Tuesday is CCBs commuting seminar (virtual) that I’ll be attending. I’ll be doing a bike delivery for the Bucket Brigade on Wednesday as they were all filled up last week. Should be a fun time and good publicity for Doing Things By Bike.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 9
    Sales: $105.00
    Memberships: 2 for $60
    Bikes (refurb): 0
    Tire/tubes: 4 for $8

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  11. Weekly Update: bike sales, Quad Fix-it day, Bucket Brigade

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Had some nice warm weather last week. Sold a few more bikes. It’s almost as if there’s some kind of correlation between warmer weather and bike riding?
    Elsewhere: we had two participants for our Friday Ride. We had our first Quad Fix It Day but that was a bust: cool and rainy weather don’t make for a good bike time. We’ll do another one this Thursday but it’s forecasting for rain and cool weather again. Spring is fickle.
    Pending approval from Channing Murray, I’ll do a delivery run for the Bucket Brigade this week and see if it’s viable/feasible as a recurring event that we can promote.

    Our donations are picking up but mostly it’s been scrap-worthy parts, including maybe the worst salt/water damaged frame I’ve ever seen. Fun times!
    The numbers:

    Visitors: 30 (I card only)
    Sales: 1,241.60
    Memberships: 7 for $210
    Bikes (refurb): 5 for $820
    Tires/tubes: 7 for $40

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  12. Weekly Update: Moved bikes, Quad Fix-it Day, Bike Census

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Not much news from last week. We still aren’t busy-busy. I picked up bikes from the warehouse to scrap. I moved six kids bikes to Urbana on the big bike trailer and got lots of surprised looks, quizzical glances, and a couple thumbs up. Considering the amount of attention that trailer gets, we should look into getting some signage for it.

    There’s been some nascent interest in volunteering from a few visitors. That’s been welcome. We also rearranged the workspace, moving the second repair stand next to the first one by the tool wall. They’re still safely separated but not totally annexed to the other side of the shop.
    This week is our Friday Ride—last week was a no-show again—and our Quad Fix It Day on Thursday. I’ll be helping with the Bike Census on Wednesday as well.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 15
    Sales: $627.24
    Memberships: 3 for $90
    Bikes (refurb): 1 for $140

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  13. Bike Census volunteer opportunity (4/28) and TED Talk discussion (4/29)

    Happy Friday! I hope you are having a great Earth Week/Earth Month and have been able to attend a few (of the many!) activities this April. The Bike Census Spring 2021 is next Wednesday, April 28, from 10 – 11 AM. Bike Census is a collaborative, community-wide effort between Facilities & Services (F&S) and Champaign County Bikes that began in 2013 as part of ongoing improvement efforts to support the campus’ Bicycle Friendly University status.

     

    If you are available to volunteer next Wednesday morning, please sign up here. There will be a virtual training session beforehand at 9 AM. Two Illinois coffee mugs will be raffled off for student volunteers. I hope you are able to participate and in the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact Sarthak Prasad (sprasad9@illinois.edu).

     

    On another note, in celebration of Earth Month, the next iSEE TED Talk: Eco-Edition event will focus on environmental activism and individual versus corporate responsibility for climate change. On Thursday, April 29 at 7 PM, participants will view a prerecorded TED Talk presented in July 2020 by Xiye Bastida: "If you adults won't save the world, we will." Afterward, all are invited to participate in a guided discussion hosted by iSEE Communications Intern and ESES student, Maria Maring. Sign up here.

     

    As always, be sure to check out the iSEE Sustainability Calendar for upcoming events and programs and help spread the word. Have a great weekend!

     

  14. Weekly Update: Friday Ride

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Not a whole lot to report from last week. We had our first attendee for a Friday Ride. He was unfamiliar with basic rules of the road so we took him on a very short loop to get him acclimated. At a stop light he asked, “So you can ride in the road?” Something to consider in future route planning/participation. We missed a call/voicemail from someone else asking about the Friday Ride so we’ll have to keep an eye on the phones going forward, as well.

    The forecasted snow on Tuesday probably won’t help business this week. I have the Campus Transportation Advisory Committee to attend on Tuesday but the rest of the week is business as usual. I’ll grab some more salvageable parts from the bike barn for staff-tasks for the week.
    The numbers:

    Visits: 25

    Sales: $339
    Memberships: 5 for $150
    Tubes/tires: 10 for $50


    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  15. Weekly Update: Basic Maintenance 101, Friday Ride

    All, Still not steadily busy as the temps started to dip. We’ll see what this week brings.
    We had our Basic Maintenance 101 class on Wednesday night. Sam held the class and we had 5 people signed up but only 1 showed. Friday Ride was a no-show except for a DI reporter who wanted to cover the event.
    This week is business as usual and our Friday Ride again. I’ll scavenge some freewheels and tires/tubes off some of the junk bikes in storage at some point, too. We are desperately low on used freewheels and can’t really get any new ones due to the sustained supply shortages.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 22
    Sales: $664.50

    Bikes (refurb): 3 for $410
    Tires/tubes: 7 for $26

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    WManager, Campus Bike Center

  16. Weekly Update: Interview with Buzz Magazine, Fix-a-Flat, Bike Maintenance 101

    Associated Project(s): 

    All,This week projects to be a busy one as the temps climb into the 70s.
    Last week I had an interview with Buzz Magazine and we had our Fix-a-Flat class on Wednesday evening. It was well-attended with 3 participants. Our first Friday Ride was a no-show as it was still, I guess, a little chilly for most people. Personally, 60 and sunny is delightful weather to ride a bike. Elsewhere, I also worked with Todd to clear out some bikes at the warehouse. One guy came by specifically asking for the Bike@Illinois seat cover. I happily obliged.
    This week we have another after-hours class on Wednesday (Bike Maintenance 101) and another Friday Ride.
    Campus Rec IT came by on Friday and set up our new phone, new number, and email address. I worked with Barry to get this new number hooked into TBP communications. The phone will ring in the lobby, which will be much easier to hear and answer than just having my office line.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 18
    Sales: $677.50
    Memberships: 5 for $150
    Bikes (refurb): 2 for $370
    Tire/tubes: 4 for $29

    Thanks!

     

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  17. Weekly Update: Bike sales, Fix-a-Flat, Friday Ride

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Much like the weather, we were up and down this past week. Sold a bike to a gentleman who’s planning to ride a portion of the Katy Trail in Missouri with his young daughter. I’ll take it as a good sign for future generations that I’m seeing young kids in here repeatedly.
    This week we’ve got a couple extra curriculars with our Fix-a-Flat class on Wednesday night and our first Friday Ride. I’ll meet with my staff to iron out the details for those two events.
    I’ll also be attending TBPs monthly meeting tonight.
    The numbers:

    Visitors: 20
    Sales: $691

    Bikes (refurb): 3 for $500
    Membership: 1 for $30
    U-locks: 3 for $63 (yay safety!)

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  18. Weekly Update: Getting busier, fixing bikes

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, We’re definitely getting busier as we creep closer to “Everyone Rides” weather.
    Highlight of the week was a dad and daughter coming in with the daughter’s bike. Bad freewheel so we took it apart and cleaned/re-greased it. That kid was into it! She was eager as all get-out, loved every step of the process, refused dad’s help on multiple occasions, and wanted to know all the names of all the bike parts. A model visitor. Dad loved our education/recycling mission and shared a disheartening story about government-mandated lawnmower obsolescence.

    Elsewhere, I got some IT things sorted out that will help the bike center run more smoothly, picked up some bikes from the warehouse, and hired a new employee to help in advance of the warm/busy times.
    This week I’ll have the aforementioned employee start, host a staff meeting on Wednesday evening, and sit in on the SSC Coffee Hour for Transportation & Infrastructure on Thursday.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 16
    Sales: $511
    Memberships: 5 for $150
    Bikes (refurb): 1 for $180
    Misc: $88

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  19. Weekly Update: Busy week!

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Monday of last week we were as busy as we’ve been since March 2020—if not longer. Warm and sunny tends to do that. I’m sure our new signage isn’t hurting things! Friday picked up as well. We even had someone waiting in the lobby for an open repair stand. It’ll be nice when we can space the stands a little closer and fit a few more in the workshop.
    Last week I interviewed for a potential new hire and a different new hire started last week. He hit the ground running, which was really great, and needed.
    We got TBP some keys to help handle the scrap parts, so that will keep things cleaner around here. On Friday maintenance guys installed garage hook racks from which to hang wheels. I’ve already hung a bunch of wheels up which both makes the wheels more accessible and keeps the space looking cleaner/safer (no one can trip on wheels if they’re not on the ground)!

    This week we’ve got a couple drop-off repairs to handle, some bikes to grab from the warehouse, and some training to do with staff to prep them for busier times.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 29
    Sales: $311
    Bike (refurb): 1 for $200
    Membership: 1 for $30
    Misc: $46

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  20. Weekly Update: Things picking up, second staffer

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Things picked up a little on Thursday/Friday last week as the weather began to turn. We also had two drop-off repairs come in, a Kids Bike Giveaway donation, a bike sale, and a membership sale. Todd from TBP picked up some scrap, which was super helpful. I’m working on getting him a key so he can stay on top of our scrap pile.

    This week is projecting to be warmer and accordingly, I’ll bring on a second staffer for hours for Mon, Tues, Wed. I’ll make arrangements to grab some bikes from the warehouse, as well, since we’ve worked through our current bikes. Now we just need to sell them so we’ll have space for more.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 17
    Sales: $311
    Bike (refurb): 1 for $200
    Memberships: 1 for $30
    U-lock: 1 for $21
    Tire/tube: 4 for $15
    Misc: $45

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

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