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Bike shop news roundup

Thursday, August 29th, 2013
ebike store sign
The eBike Store has moved.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

I’ve got several bits of local bike shop news in my brain and my inbox, so I figured it’s a perfect time for another roundup…

Congressman Earl Blumenauer turns attention to bike shops today

Portland’s representative on Capitol Hill is in Portland today focusing on bike shops’ impact on the local economy. After a tour sampling a few shops, he plans to convene a ‘Bike Shop Roundtable’ at VeloCult. According to a Blumenauer aide, about 12-15 local bike shop owners will be there. “It’s meant to be a check-in with different bike shops and businesses around the city, a discussion of Portland’s budding cycling economy, and an opportunity for the businesses themselves to discuss issues, federal or otherwise, they might be facing,” said the aide. I plan to be there and will bring back a full story, so stay tuned! (more…)

Bike shop on Williams Ave is latest burglary victim

Friday, July 26th, 2013
metropolis cycle repair2
Metropolis lost several
thousand dollars in the theft.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Metropolis Cycle Repair (2249 N Williams Ave) was broken into last night, becoming just the latest in a long and steady stream of bike shop burglaries.

According to shop owner Nathan Roll, thieves took four bikes and “a few thousand dollars in tools and merchandise.” The Police have been at the store all morning to assess the damage and document the crime.

Roll has emailed all the other shops in town to keep an eye out for the merchandise and he’s hoping the larger community will help out too. He emailed us a list of the products that were stolen: (more…)

Bike Farm growing into new location

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013
Bike Farm volunteers have blank slate
at their new space.
(Photos: Bike Farm)

Bike Farm, the plucky all-volunteer collective that educates people about how to ride and work on their bikes, is set for a major move.

Their new location, 1810 NE 1st Avenue (map) will make them much more accessible to a larger portion of Portlanders and it will give more space than their current 760 square-foot shop on NE Wygant. The location, just off N Williams and north of Broadway, also places them in a burgeoning hub of bike organizations and businesses that includes the offices of Portland Design Works, the Community Cycling Center, and Planet X/Titus.
(more…)

Outside Magazine names Velo Cult one of best bike shops in America

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013
Not your ordinary bike shop.
(Photo: Jeff Strange)

Sky Boyer’s big bet that Portland’s Hollywood neighborhood could support a 10,000-square-foot headquarters for bike culture is looking smarter every month.

In June, Outside Magazine named the shop Boyer owns, Velo Cult, one of the top 10 bike shops in the country. The joint “stands out as a beacon of cycling culture,” the magazine wrote:

The shop is known just as much as a gathering place as for the product they sell, a reputation they have embraced with a stage for live bands (built from an old drawbridge), a theater space with frequent cycling screenings, the de rigueur coffee roaster, plenty of picnic table seating, and an open invitation for all cyclists to come and hang.

(more…)

New bike shop opens in Southwest Burlingame neighborhood

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013
Glenn and Mark Vanselow of Burlingame Bikes.
(Photos: Glenn Vanselow)

Burlingame Bikes is Portland’s newest bike shop.

The shop was started by the father-son duo of Glenn and Marc Vanselow. Marc (the son) is a professional bike mechanic who got his start in 2001 by working on Alfa Romeos. When the auto shop he used to work out left town in 2005, he started working on bicycles and has been a bike mechanic ever since. Marc’s dad Glenn is a enthusiast of vintage European road bikes and a partner in the business.
(more…)

From e-bikes to recumbents, Portland’s niche bike shops find success

Monday, July 1st, 2013
Coventry Cycle Works-1
Coventry Cycles has found a comfortable
niche with recumbents.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

With (at least) 69 bike shops in Portland — that’s one for every two square miles, in case you’re keeping track — we’re often asked how they can all survive. The bike shop business isn’t easy; but one way to stand out in the crowd and be successful is to find a niche (or create a new one) and then develop it into a healthy market. Several Portland bike shop owners have done precisely that. And they’ve done it well.

Powered by high-touch marketing and nurtured by Portland’s seemingly bottomless love of interesting bikes, a handful of small-scale entrepreneurs have taken big risks on bike shops that fit both their personal passions and market niches that bigger companies either couldn’t serve or didn’t even know existed.

Here’s a quick take on each of three specialized Portland bike shops whose bets are paying off.
(more…)

Business booms for bike valet in South Waterfront

Tuesday, May 14th, 2013
Photo taken last week at the Go By Bike shop under the Aerial Tram. “Only” 175 bikes parked that day.
(Photo: Kiel Johnson)

(more…)

New bike shop coming to downtown St. Johns

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

Downtown St. Johns has been without a bike shop for a few months since Weir’s Cyclery moved out of the neighborhood at at the end of last year (they’re now located on N Lombard at Portsmouth) That didn’t seem right to resident Ben Helgren, so he’s decided to take matters into his own hands. Ben plans to open a new bike shop, Block Bikes, on March 9th that he hopes will become the go-to place for bike riders in St. Johns. The new store will open up at the corner of N Burlington and Philadelphia (right off the St. Johns Bridge, map).

Ben, 35, has worked in non-profits for the past nine years (on programs promoting financial literacy and home-buying skills) but he has wanted a job in the bike industry for a while now. He became a certified bicycle mechanic through the United Bicycle Institute last fall and he and his wife planned to move to Billings, Montana where she planned to go to school and Ben planned to work at a bike shop. But plans changed, explained Ben during a phone call this morning.
(more…)

Back from injury, Marilyn Hayward to open new Coventry Cycles in Beaverton

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013
Marilyn Hayward
Marilyn Hayward, owner of
Coventry Cycle Works East (and West!).
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

It sure was nice to see the beaming smile back on Coventry Cycle Works’ owner Marilyn Hayward’s face this morning. That smile — and the spirit behind it — was a far cry from where she was just six months ago. On August 6th Marilyn was involved in a collision while riding her recumbent that sent her flying twenty feet in the air. Her fall was stopped when her head slammed against a curb.

Marilyn, 63, suffered a traumatic brain injury. She was unconscious for over a day and spent a month in the hospital. Thankfully, her brain injury was not severe and she’s made a nearly full recovery. “I was very fortunate,” she told me today. “The doctors said if I wasn’t wearing my helmet it’s for certain I would be dead.” (more…)

Jay Graves retires, sells Bike Gallery chain

Friday, November 30th, 2012
Jay Graves
Jay Graves, the former — yes former — owner
and president of Bike Gallery, as seen yesterday.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Jay Graves announced his retirement as owner and operator of the six-store Bike Gallery chain this morning.

Graves has passed on management duties to longtime Bike Gallery employee Kelly Aicher. Aicher now has an ownership stake in the company and he’ll also be the general manager of the six stores. Bike Gallery has been acquired by Mike Olson of San Diego, California-based Trek Bicycle Superstore, which is the number one Trek retailer in America.

This marks the end of an era for bicycling in Portland. (more…)

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