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Photo of a bike being repaired at the station found in the Science B courtyard between Science A and MacHall. // Photo courtesy of Bike Root.

Bike Root club installs UofC’s first bicycle repair station

By Sophia Lopez, October 17 2020 —

The Bike Root club recently installed the University of Calgary’s first bicycle repair station earlier this month with the help of the Students’ Union Sustainability Fund.

The student-run community bike shop’s repair station can be found in the Science B courtyard between Science A and MacHall. Students will now be able perform quick maintenance on their bikes, from using a screwdriver to using the air-filling tubes, 24 hours a day. The success of this sustainable achievement can be attributed to the work of Amira Elwakeel, the vice-president events of Bike Root.

Two summers ago, Elwakeel found the use of a bike repair station extremely helpful while she was travelling in Germany, and the experience inspired her to want to install one on the U of C campus. Her role as the vice-president events at Bike Root allowed her to follow through with this project. With the tools and equipment necessary to complete basic bike repairs always readily available, this new installation will also, as Elwakeel hopes, encourage people to start thinking more sustainably.

“It’s pretty great for encouraging people to get on their bikes,” she said.

Although the repair station was installed to provide people a quick and independent way to fix up your own bike, Elwakeel mentions how the Bike Root shop is always happy to help those with appointments made.

Photo of the bike repair station found in the Science B courtyard between Science A and MacHall. // Photo courtesy of Bike Root.

“It’s kind of a sneak peak of the services that Bike Root provides to campus,” Elwakeel explained. “So although you have the tools that are available there, if it seems a bit daunting or you’re not sure what to do with them and your bike needs a little bit of work, there are plenty of great volunteers at the Bike Root that are super happy to help you do whatever you need to do to get your bike in working condition.” 

The SU was delighted to fund the club’s sustainable project, and is now even more inspired to continue supporting other ideas that encourage sustainability across campus.

“We are proud to support the Bike Root’s Bike Repair Stand initiative through the SU Sustainability Fund,” said a statement from SU vice- president operations and finance Mohammad Ali. “Many campuses have similar equipment in place, and we’re encouraged by the Bike Root’s ambition to promote sustainable transportation to and from campus by providing free year-round access to bike tools. We felt that this project supported the entire campus community to be more sustainable, and we encourage students with other big-impact ideas to consider applying for a Sustainability Fund grant too.”

The Bike Root shop can be found on the ground floor in the North-West corner of the Arts Parkade. For more information regarding the new bike repair station, Bike Root in general and how to set up appointments, visit the Bike Root website or send them an email at info@bikeroot.ca.  

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