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Bike Shops

The four roles of bike shops: new PSU thesis breaks it down

Friday, August 21st, 2015
The Outer Rim Bike Shop-1
Brandon Fite at the Outer Rim bike shop in Gateway.(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Bike shops matter. And like so many brick-and-mortar retailers across this country, many American bike shops have been failing.

How scared should we be about this? And if we’re scared, what’s to be done?

A newly minted Portland State University graduate and employee of the (perfectly healthy) Northwest Portland institution 21st Avenue Cycles is advancing that conversation with a senior thesis he published this year. In it, he proposes a typology (“four types of local bike shops”) and interviews five Portland bike shop professionals about the roles bike shops play and how they interact with a bike-friendly city.

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Velo Cult’s new displays bring U.S.-made products to the table

Thursday, March 26th, 2015
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(Photos courtesy Velo Cult Bike Shop and Tavern)

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Thieves break into Gladys Bikes on Alberta, steal two bikes

Tuesday, November 25th, 2014
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Damage to Gladys Bikes’ front door.
(Photo: Leah Benson)

Bike shop owner Leah Benson is Portland’s latest bike theft victim.

Benson owns Gladys Bikes at 2905 NE Alberta Street. She shared the bad news earlier this evening: “I received a call in the wee hours of the morning telling me that someone had shattered our front door and broken into the shop.”

The thieves made off with two bikes and Benson is urging everyone to keep an eye out for a Giant Liv Alight city bike and a Bianchi Lupo drop bar road bike. We know how stolen bikes tend to turn up shortly after being stolen, so time is of the essence! (Scroll down for photos of the bikes.)

Shop break-ins are all too common in Portland. We’ve reported on several in the past few years. Between November 2011 and February 2012, a thief known as the “window pane bandit” hit four separate shops.
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EnSelle ‘The Road Bike Shop’ to close after 16 years in business

Friday, November 21st, 2014
Veloshop Cyclocross Race at PIR

EnSelle, a bike shop that focuses exclusively on road bikes, will close its doors at the end of this year.

EnSelle was founded by Jask Liskear in 1998 and has built a strong niche as “the shop for connoisseurs of fine road bikes.” Liskear is a dealer for BMC and Land Shark bikes and his shop (located just off SW Macadam Blvd) is officially certified for repairs by Campagnolo and Shimano. In addition to the latest and greatest bikes, EnSelle is full of classic memorabilia of the sport he loves.

Liskear announced the big news via a customer email sent out today at noon: (more…)

Bike shop spreads the cyclocross gospel with ‘CX Curious’ workshops

Thursday, October 16th, 2014
cx curious team
The CX Curious crowd at Saturday’s Cross
Crusade opener at Alpenrose Dairy included
Noel Mickelberry, Kyla Yeoman, Lindsay Walker,
Katie Popoff, Kathy Lombardi, Claudia Martinez, Melia
Tichenor, Nate Semm, Julia Himmelstein and Allan Rudwick.
(Photos courtesy Gladys Bikes)

Gladys Bikes, the woman-centric bike shop on Northeast Alberta Street, keeps coming up with interesting new projects that prove how important great retailers are to a city’s bike infrastructure.

The latest we’ve caught wind of: A series of low-cost courses for people who identify as “‘cross curious.” As in cyclocross, of course.

“It was an idea that came from our advisory board – GAB, the Gladys Advisory Board,” Gladys Bikes owner Leah Benson said in an interview Thursday. “The more conversations we had, the more we realized a lot of people were interested but had never tried it.”

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Local bike shops as important as infrastructure?

Friday, September 26th, 2014
North Portland Bikeworks new location-2-1
Bike shops are a key piece of biking’s future. But are we selling them short?
(Photo by J. Maus/BikePortland)

Should advocates for bicycling consider retail bike shops as something more than just a place to hang out and buy stuff? What if we thought of them as being so imperative to the cycling revolution that we fought for them and promoted them with as much urgency and fervor as a major piece of new bike infrastructure?
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East of 82nd, NW Pro Gear fills the bike shop void

Friday, September 12th, 2014
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NW Pro Gear sells both new and used bikes in Lents.
(Photos courtesy Dimitriy Kuzmich)

Last month, Southeast Portland’s bike shop desert got a little less dry. (more…)

Sunset Cycles in Bethany to close its doors at end of October

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014
2012 Pedal Nation-PDX Bike Show-6
Roger Colwell in March 2012.
(Photo J. Maus/BikePortland)

A shop just over the west hills of Portland is set to close at the end of October.

Sunset Cycles (15320 NW Central Drive) owner and founder Roger Colwell announced his retirement in a customer newsletter on Labor Day. Colwell opened the store in 2003 and expanded into a second store in Beaverton in 2011 (he closed that store a year later).

In a message posted to the shop blog yesterday, Colwell said owning the shop has been one of the most rewarding experiences of his life but now he’s looking forward to spending more time with his family and exploring Oregon’s backroads in his bike. “Ill miss the day-to-day interactions with customers who come in the store,” he wrote. “Seeing the look in the eyes of a new cyclist who rides off with a new bike is genuinely priceless.”
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Quick complaint, quick action: Bike shop and customer show how to fight everyday sexism

Monday, August 11th, 2014

Update 8/12: The bike shop in question has shared a brief statement about their response. See below.

Here’s a brief online exchange from Saturday afternoon that shows what it looks like when people come together to marginalize a sexist comment from a bike shop employee.

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Local bike shop news roundup: Major closures, big moves, and smoothies!

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

There’s only one constant in Portland’s bike shop ecosystem: change.

With about 70 or so bike retail shops in the city boundary, hundreds of employees constantly switching between them, and an ever-changing market of bicycle riders, we need a full-time business editor on staff here at BikePortland just to keep up.

In the meantime, I’ve cobbled together several weeks of notes and emails to bring you the latest local bike shop news…

Bike ‘N Hike closes Portland store

shops-bikehike

One of Portland’s largest shops, Bike ‘N Hike, is closing. The 7,500 square foot store at SE Grand and Oak is having a big inventory closeout sale through the end of this month, then Portland will be without a Bike ‘N Hike location for the first time in over a decade. Owner Kevin Chudy will still operate his five other locations throughout the state (in Albany, Corvallis, Beaverton, Milwaukie, and Hillsboro). (more…)

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