Plans for a community bike shop in Green Bay unveiled

GREEN BAY, Wis. Plans for a community bike shop in Green Bay were unveiled Friday. The space was donated from the city to a non-profit group of bicycle advocates, cyclists and enthusiasts called “Green Bay Bicycle Collective."

A rendering of what the finished Green Bay community bike shop will look like COURTESY: Berners Schober Architecture

The community bike shop on 4th and Broadway offers free bike workshops, bike maintenance and safety instruction. It hopes to start soft openings next week.

"We'll have space open for people to just come, we'll have stations and tools available for people to come and work on their own bikes," said Heather Gentry, Green Bay Bicycle Collective President.

The bike shop collects unwanted bikes and parts for re-use. The Green Bay Bicycle Collective hopes to create an "Earn-A-Bike Program" by the spring for those needing a bike.

"Those without a bike, we're going to focus mostly on children but we really won't turn anyone away, they'll come in they'll learn bicycle safety at a minimum, depending on how old they are. If they're a little older they will learn how to change tires, check the cables, learn how to actually maintain their bikes, and those are skills they can take with them forever," Gentry said.

Mayor Jim Schmitt says giving the bike shop the green light was an easy decision.

"It's free, it's free for somebody to work on your bike, you may have to spend a little bit for some of the parts, but it just is one of those things that promotes all groups of people all classes of people and something the city very much supports," said Mayor Schmitt.

Police chief Andrew Smith sees the shop creating a healthier and safer community.

“I can't imagine kids that are in this bike shop getting in any kind of trouble while they're here working on their bikes with their pals, or while they're fixing up bikes, or while they're out in the neighborhoods and it's just one more piece of the puzzle that we have that makes Green Bay a great place to live and helps keep Green Bay really safe," said Chief Smith.