Montreal

Montrealers bike-repair stations aim to keep cyclists rolling

Montreal's Ville-Marie borough has set up bike repair stations to help cyclists in need of a quick adjustment or tire pump.

New repair stations aimed at helping stranded cyclists

Cyclists in downtown Montreal in need of a quick pump-up or a minor adjustment now have a bit of help.

The city's Ville-Marie borough has installed three bicycle-repair stations, equipped with a bike stand, an air pump, wrench, Allen keys and other tools.

The goal is to make sure small breakdowns don't slow cyclists down.

"People who ride their bike to work, sometimes want to put more air, sometimes you have some small repairs to do, sometimes you got a flat tire," said city councillor Marc-André Gadoury. "You need somewhere to actually repair it. This is done easily with the bike-repair station."

Gadoury said the repair stations are a simple way to make a city more bike-friendly.

Montreal's bike-repair stations can be found at:

  • Place Émilie-Gamelin (corner of Berri Street and De Maisonneuve Boulevard).
  • McGill Street and De La Commune Street.
  • Near Champ-de-Mars Metro station behind Montreal City Hall.

Idea from Puerto Rico

A Quebec couple travelling in Puerto Rico got the idea for the repair stations. Diane Graveline and Jean Hébert were cycling through the country, but were slowed by trouble with their bikes one day.

"We couldn't find any tools, and then someone told us that there was a bike repair station over by the pharmacy," said Hébert.

Hébert, an entrepreneur in the steel industry, and Graveline, who's an interior designer, liked what they saw and decided to design one for Quebec.

"The first challenge was to adapt the station to the Quebec and Canadian climate," explained Hébert. "That led us to find an air pump in Germany."

Since the first station was installed in Montreal, the couple has not stopped receiving phone calls from cities, schools and other groups interested in their creation.

Each station costs about $2,000.

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