Bike care for the masses
U-M students plan commuter aids
by Patrick Dunn
Public bike maintenance equipment will help ease cyclists' commutes on the U-M campus this spring, thanks to grad student Arielle Fleisher. Fleisher, a student in the School of Public Health, spearheaded the plan to install a do-it-yourself bike repair stand at the Central Campus Transit Center, and air pumps at North Quad and Pierpont Commons. The $10,000 funding came from the university's new Planet Blue Student Innovation Fund.
The idea came from Fleisher's friend and project teammate Parrish Bergquist, who is also involved with Common Cycle, a volunteer group whose mission, according to its Facebook page, is "Getting more people biking by making it easier to keep your bike rolling." Fleisher says Common Cycle's emphasis on education and assistance carried over to this project. "We didn't want to just put these products in the ground and walk away," she says. During a "Bike Week" event last month, Fleisher's team stationed "bike ambassadors" to show riders how to use the tools. Fleisher is planning similar outreach for the spring, and she sees this project as the first of many. "It's giving community members the tools they need to be in charge of their commute," she says. "The more we can create a culture and an infrastructure that supports this, the better we're going to be."
[Originally published in December, 2012.]