Letter: City taking donations for programs’ 2nd year

Published 8:10 am Wednesday, October 12, 2016

The city of Austin is again accepting donations for the Red Bike Project starting on Wednesday, October 5, 2016.

The goal of the Red Bike program is to encourage healthy living and reduce traffic congestion. Making biking free and easy encourages residents to try making routine trips by bike and some will see the benefits and choose to ride more often. This also builds on our many efforts of trail development, bike designations on the roadways, bike fix it stations and moving towards becoming a Bike Friendly designated community.

The public is asked to join in on these continued efforts by donating bikes in rideable condition at Rydjor Bike Shop at 219 North Main Street. Rydjor is open Monday-Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; closing late at 8 p.m. on Thursday and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Email newsletter signup

The Red Bike program is particularly seeking adult, single speed, pedal brake bikes. However, all bikes will be accepted. Bikes that can’t be used by Red Bike riders will be used for other community purposes. Multi-speed bikes will be converted to single-speed pedal brake bikes and painted red for the Red Bike program.

Cash donations are also encouraged to help offset the costs of converting and maintaining the bikes. Checks should be mailed to Austin Area Foundation at 110 First Ave. SE, Austin, MN 55912. Please mark checks for the Red Bike program.

After collecting bikes this fall, Rydjor Bike staff and volunteers will convert bikes over the winter. The plan is to roll out up to 60 Red Bikes in the Spring of 2017.

The Red Bike Project is a City of Austin initiative with partners Mower County SHIP, Rydjor Bike Shop and the Vision 2020 Bike Walk Committee. Funds for converting bikes, bike racks and signage explaining the program will be provided by Mower County SHIP, donations from individuals and business site sponsorships.

Any Austin resident or visitor will be able to use a Red Bike to travel through the city. Riders are asked to return bikes to a Red Bike rack and to abide by the ‘Ride Respect Return’ motto.

Thank you for your help and enjoy the ride.

Steven Kime,

Chairman, Austin Vision 2020 Bike/Walk Trail Committee