YORK-BikeWalk Williamsburg volunteers are putting the final cosmetic touches on the organization’s new co-op storefront located at 601-E Merrimac Trail in the James-York Plaza.
“We’re still in the beginning stages of making our idea a reality and hope to move into our physical shop space within the next few weeks,” said Andy Ballentine, communications director for Bicycle Co-Operative of Williamsburg.
The non-profit aims to provide access to bicycles for youth and adults in the community who otherwise cannot obtain functional bicycles. “There are so many people who depend on bicycles for transportation to keep a job and to get to school because they can’t afford a car,” said Ballentine. “That’s who we’re aiming to assist.”
Bicycle Co-Operative of Williamsburg receives and refurbishes donated bicycles and distributes them to individuals based on their ability to pay. “We have about five people who have been refurbishing bicycles in their homes, so we’re looking forward to a shop space to consolidate that,” said Ballentine.
The co-op anticipates training youth in facility operations as well as educating members of the community on the benefits of safe bicycling. With roughly 15 current members, the co-op hopes to expand that number with their new shop. “We will be training about four or five people that would be able to greet folks walking into the shop and sell bicycles, clothing, and parts,” said Ballentine.
The non-profit looks forward to passing a fire inspection next week and conducting a soft opening soon after. “We’ll have a grand opening in the spring because that’s when people really start thinking of bicycling,” said Ballentine.
Please visit BikeWalk Williamsburg’s Facebook page for updates on Bicycle Co-Operative of Williamsburg’s storefront status.