Search and Rescue for Abandoned Bikes
By CAROLYN SZCZEPANSKIPhotos by Michael Boles
For the past eight months, a group of urban cyclists have been sprucing up a long-forgotten storefront at 31st and Troost. It’s the building with “Niece’s Bags” still painted on the glass-fronted entryway. They’ve been pulling up old floorboards, building a storage shed and collecting donations and tools since last summer. This weekend, it will reopen in the tiny shop space as the 816 Bike Collective.
Joining hundreds of bike collectives around the globe, the aim of the 816 is to rescue and repair old or abandoned bicycles and give them away in exchange for money, volunteer manpower or other friendly barter. If other cities are any guide, with a dedicated, non-commercial space to do repairs, host events and distribute bikes, more folks will start pedaling — and the community of earth-friendly commuters grows.
Check it out when it opens Saturday from 3 to 7 p.m.