Deep River book store offers free bike repair station to promote alternative transportation

DEEP RIVER — An unbiased utilized bookseller together the Connecticut River has developed a no cost bicycle fix station for cyclists that the owner hopes will inspire a lot more people today to use alternate transportation.

The very simple structure has a rack to maintain a bicycle, hooked up resources for typical repairs and air pump. Available all through daylight hours exterior of the bookstore at 171 Principal St., Bennett thinks it’s just one of the few in the point out.

The service is out there to these who stay or visit the Sylvantide Valley, also identified as the Reduce Connecticut Valley. It involves a variety of other decrease Middlesex County cities, including Westbrook, Aged Saybrook, East Hampton, East Haddam, Lyme and Previous Lyme.

Previous jobs at the shop have integrated a seed-sharing station, plant swap, the distribution of free of charge books to minimal-earnings homes and a local community “Freedge” stocked with free of charge food items.

“If there is any income left after having to pay our payments, what’s left goes into the local community — aiding men and women by encouraging and fostering bicycle society here making sure no child goes to bed hungry, and kids have accessibility to books,” Bennett said.

He’s in the method of making use of for nonprofit status.

The venture arrived to fruition via local community aid. Tools ended up donated by providers these as Airline Cycles in Colchester, and enable from Wayward Woods in Haddam, as nicely as suggestions from Essex Components.

“Bicycle mend stations are now accessible commercially,” the proprietor claimed. “Unfortunately, they charge in the neighborhood of $1,000 each. With the assist of just a handful of people today in Sylvantide, we ended up equipped to produce this for fewer than $200 — that will make me pleased.”

Bennett is a significant proponent of touring on two wheels.

“Bicycles are virtually best devices: They are pleasurable, they are great for our bodies, they are really very affordable, and, most important, they’re excellent for the environment,” he reported. “Hopefully (and with operate), we’ll see our streets get safer, and see additional and a lot more people today on bicycles.”

These “need to be an essential portion of any long run we generate. They’re not practical all the time for all people today, but ,just about every time someone chooses to just take their bicycle to get the job done, the retailer, or for a leisurely push as a substitute of their automobile, which is a step in a favourable path,” Bennett claimed.

To stimulate more men and women to opt for alternate transportation, there will have to be an overhaul of infrastructure in the point out, he explained. “Courtesy stations are a portion of that. An additional huge point that some communities just take critically and others never is creating the road risk-free — for pedestrians, bicyclists and autos.”

In the long term, the bookseller is hoping to build a bicycle collective to train riders how to make very simple fixes and other valuable abilities. It would include things like a nominal membership payment, this kind of as $10, “to hold the lights on and the payments compensated,” he defined.