April 5, 2023

Cycling Into Spring: WCU’s Bike Lending Library is Here!

bike lending program

Can’t find a parking space? Need to get to class faster? With the opening of the Bicycle Lending Library (BLL), you’re in luck!

After months of careful planning, the BLL operates from the loading dock of the Francis Harvey Green library (FHG), located on West Rosedale Avenue.

“The launch of the Bicycle Lending Library is a big win for students, employees, and the University,” says Bradley Flamm, director of the WCU Office of Sustainability. “We’ve made ambitious sustainability commitments; providing free access to bicycles and free training in safe urban cycling and bike maintenance means we’re making excellent progress toward a balanced transportation system that works for everyone.”

The BLL offers 28 Trek bicycles available in sizes XXS-XL. WCU students and employees can borrow a bicycle for two-week increments or full semesters. Riders should submit an online request for a bicycle and wait to be contacted by the library staff. From here, the lending process will begin. After scheduling a pick-up time, riders will present their WCU ID and receive their bicycle, as well as a helmet and a combination lock.

Those who’ve been involved in this initiative hope that more members of the campus community feel comfortable using quiet, low-carbon, healthy, safe modes of transportation. 

Student workers Nishat Hossain and Katie Klema have many responsibilities, including responding to lending requests, getting borrowers set up with a properly fitted bike and helmet, and performing regular maintenance on the bikes in the regular repair workshops. The workshops are held every Thursday evening from 5 to 7 p.m. at the library loading dock. This is a space for cyclists to bond over their passion for cycling and bike maintenance while helping others with any issues. Bike tools and bikes will be provided for those interested in working on them. Bike pumps and tool kits are available at the Library Help Desk for those who prefer to work on their own.

Klema conveyed that these workshops have helped her with problem-solving skills. “I’m more than capable of figuring out how to do this and learning on my own, and have the confidence to do it myself … and it feels good to be a part of something where you’re helping out classes and you have people coming in who are passionate about the program.”

Bikes can be taken off campus. The path to South Campus can be used to reach the Gordon Natural Area and parks like Everhart Park, Horace Pippin Park, and Marshall Square Park are all a short ride away. 

Hossain offers that the BLL is a great resource for those who loved riding bikes while growing up. “It’s really cool to have that resource and learn about it, because I’ll still use it when I’m living off campus next year.”

For more information about the BLL, visit https://library.wcupa.edu/bikelending/Home or contact Dierdre Childs, interim associate dean for student services; Cristin Ehrgott, library services; Bradley Flamm, Office of Sustainability; or Michael Burns, associate professor of English and president of the American Bicycling Education Association. Burns is also a CyclingSavvy Instructor.

Back to top of page.