State representatives, cyclists and community celebrate new SRT bike repair station
PHILADELPHIA – A crowd of 30 people celebrated the first install of what will total seven bike repair stations along the Schuylkill River Trail.
The first fix-it station was installed at the Schuylkill Banks Walnut Street Trailhead in Philadelphia earlier this month. The Schuylkill River Greenways National Heritage Area recognized the install with an official ribbon cutting on Dec. 12. Attendees included local state representatives, community partners and cyclists.
Schuylkill River Greenways Executive Director Elaine Paul Schafer began the event by saying the stations were made possible through the collaboration of several partners to enhance the trail experience. The Philadelphia fix-it station was installed by the Schuylkill River Development Corporation, also known as Schuylkill Banks. All seven bike repair stations were funded by Schuylkill River Greenways, the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR), and the REI Co-op. Virtual Farm Creative produced the graphic design for each station.
“This is a really exciting day for the trail,” Schaefer said. “Cyclists will now have the opportunity to fix minor bike repairs right alongside the Schuylkill River Trail.”
Schaefer said the bike repair stations will help Schuylkill River Greenways in their mission to connect people and communities to the Schuylkill River.
“One of the primary tools we use to connect people to the river is the Schuylkill River Trail. The trail starts in Philadelphia and will eventually go all the way to the headwaters of the Schuylkill River for 120 miles,” she said.
Schaefer said the seven fix-it stations will be spread out along the trail between Philadelphia and Berks Counties. Each station features a bike rack, an air pump for tires in need of a boost and a full set of tools for minor bike repair. The second fix-it station was installed last week in Phoenixville at the Mowere Road Trailhead located at 198 Mowere Road.
Fix-it stations will also be installed along the Schuylkill River Trail at the East Falls Trailhead, the Gay Street Trailhead in Spring City, the Riverfront Park Trailhead in Pottstown, the Union Meadows West Trailhead in Union Township and the Birdsboro Trailhead. Exact trailhead locations can be found using the interactive trail map at schuylkillriver.org/map.
State Senator Larry Farnese said the repair stations will help promote quality of life activities in the region.
“This is a really cool idea,” he said. “Philadelphia is a city where people get around by other means than cars. We walk around and we have our bikes. This is another great way to express that.”
State Representative Brian Sims said he often uses the recreational resources available in the area.
“I have run hundreds of miles on this trail, I have kayaked here … I have certainly biked here. I haven’t had a flat yet but now I know where to come when I do,” he said.
State Representative Donna Bullock said the repair stations along the trail will help connect communities and help connect the river to neighborhoods.
“My son is nine … and bikes to school every day. It’s really exciting to see opportunities like this for him to be able to use as he grows into a young man in the city of Philadelphia,” she said.
There are currently 75 miles of the Schuylkill River Trail completed and when finished it will run 120 miles from Frackville to Philadelphia. The Schuylkill River Greenways NHA is a non-profit organization with the mission of connecting residents, visitors and communities to the Schuylkill River and the Schuylkill River Trail (SRT) by serving as a catalyst for civic engagement and economic development. For more news and updates about the Schuylkill River Trail including current projects, visit the website SchuylkillRiverTrail.com.
The Schuylkill River Trail is a major spine trail in the Circuit Trails network, a developing regional network of trails in Southeastern Pennsylvania and Southern New Jersey. Currently more than 320 miles of Circuit Trails are complete; when finished, the network will include more than 800 miles of interconnected trails that connect to key destinations across the region. Learn more at www.circuittrails.org and connect with the Circuit Trails on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to find out what is happening #onthecircuit.