The University of Utah is a commuter school, meaning a majority of students live off campus and use a variety of transportation options to get to their classes. In the warmer months, one of the most common means of getting to class on time is cycling, as illustrated by the bike paths and massive bike racks across campus. The U’s Commuter Services is working to make commuting easier for everyone, and one of its latest measures has been the introduction of a campus bike shop.
Frequently used bikes are vulnerable to a number of issues and often require repairs. In the past, many students have expressed frustration about getting a flat tire or having a chain break on campus and not having the gear to repair it. The Campus Bike Shop functions as an on-hand resource for students who run into bike-related problems on campus.
The bike shop has been a valuable resource for the campus community since it opened in June 2017.
“The winter means fewer people ride to campus; however, there is still a steady flow of students coming in to get their bikes repaired,” said Solomon Brumbaugh, a coordinator for the Campus Bike Shop who also repairs bikes himself. “The number of students we serve varies with the weather, and we have had a small boom over the past couple weeks with the warmer weather.”
The bike shop exists as part of a goal to create a transportation hub on campus, coordinated by Commuter Services, the Sustainability Office and the Facilities Management.
“We are including the future plans of the bike shop in these discussions to find a place that provides the best location for our services,” Brumbaugh said. “We offer repairs to bikes at affordable rates and are always looking to meet the next cyclist who comes in the door. The shop will develop with the demand from the campus community. The more people we serve, the bigger we will grow.”
Students are thrilled by the convenience of being able to get their bikes fixed easily and quickly on campus.
“I’m really relieved to have a bike shop on campus now,” said Rachel Haggard, who bikes around campus during the warmer months of the year. “Just a few weeks ago I got a flat tire and didn’t have any equipment with me to get it fixed. I took the bike to the shop in between classes and had it repaired in time to ride home after class. Before the shop existed I probably would have needed to call for a ride home and gotten it fixed later.”
“We, in partnership with our Office of Sustainability, strongly support cycling to the U and those who do,” read the Commuter Services website. “In order to support our growing community of cyclists, a Campus Bike Shop was opened in June to meet the demand and requests for bike services and maintenance. Cyclists can now schedule appointments to help resolve complex issues and fix common problems quickly. The shop is now open daily and ready to help students have the best cycling experience possible. Our mechanic has decades of experience and is ready to make your bike attack the hills and roll down the road smoothly.”
Students looking to get their bikes repaired can find the Campus Bike Shop just outside Annex B in a small white building at 318 South and 1850 East. It is open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., and Tuesday and Thursday from 12-4 p.m. To contact the Campus Bike Shop, call the main office at 801-581-6415 or send a message through its online chat service.
“As spring approaches we will be promoting the shop and services offered again to remind everyone we are here,” Brumbaugh said. “We are actively sponsoring [the Sustainability Office’s] events and efforts through winter as well.”