The City of Salem and members of the CANDO Neighborhood Association have worked together to create a unique public bike-fixing station for Riverfront Park. Bikers can use the tools for free any time, seven days a week.
The “bike fixation,” offers Phillips head and standard screwdrivers tire levers, wrenches, a hex key set, a bicycle pump and many other tools, attached by cables to a sturdy tubing on which bicycles can be mounted.
Corrine Fletcher, Neighborhood Association liason with the City, brought the idea to Salem. “The first time I saw a bike fixtation was smack dab in the middle of downtown Ashland,” she says. “I was thoroughly inspired by the idea of offering the tools and space for quick bike fixes to the public – a way to support and empower people riding bikes.”
Every year, the Salem Parks Foundation offers a grant for neighborhood parks. Fletcher thought a bike fixtation would be an educational service that would encourage bike riders both within and outside parks. Fletcher approached CANDO Neighborhood Association with the idea says Erma Hoffman, Parks Committee chair of CANDO, where it was met with enthusiasm.
Rebekah Engle, who was CANDO Board Chair at the time, says she and Hoffman pursued the idea, working with City staff, including Fletcher and Salem Parks Department’s Toni Whitler to apply for a grant through the Salem Parks Foundation.
“Riverfront Park was an ideal location,” Fletcher says, “because it’s central and acts as a connector to West Salem, downtown – and soon to be Minto Island!”
The bike fixation has begun to be noticed, Hoffman says. As more cyclists see it, the use will accelerate. Engle wants bicyclists of all ages and styles to use the tools at the station to make their biking experiences downtown more pleasant. “If this station is useful and effective,” she says, “perhaps the City or other entities will put more stations in useful places throughout the city making it more bicycle friendly all around.”
“I’m excited to see how infrastructural projects like the bike fixtation increase people riding bikes in Salem,” Fletcher says. “The public pump and workbench give our community access to convenient and shared resources that may have been barriers to traveling by bike.”
“And it’s just dang cool!”