ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It’s a project that has been a long time coming. A facility that is just too good to keep in one spot.
Construction has started on a new city-owned bicycle safety education center. “This is just going to give a lot of people much easier access to the services we offer,” said David Flores, Deputy Director of Parks and Recreation.
There’s already a city bike shop on the West Side called Esperanza Bicycle Safety Education Center. They accept bike donations, and volunteers refurbish old bikes. “Our goal is to try to encourage more people to be more healthy. Utilize the facilities that we have. The hundreds of miles of trails and bike lanes that we have,” said Flores.
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The Esperanza center has helped more than 25,000 people repair bikes through their open bike clinic sessions. Riders can bring their bike in for free, and workers will help diagnose what’s wrong with their bikes, give them the tools they need and teach them how to fix them.
“Our goal is to make people more comfortable with their bikes and to make them more self-sufficient. If something breaks when they’re out riding, they know how to put it back together so they can get home,” said Hugh Hulse, Manager of Esperanza Bicycle Safety Education Center.
The center holds pop-up bike clinics at parks in the city for the community. They also hold classes where more than 3,000 folks have earned a free bike. Now, they want this to be an option for more in the city. “Clearly there is a population out there that would be anxious to use something like this,” said Flores.
The new city bike shop named Mckinley Bicycle Safety and Education Center will be located in Northeast Albuquerque in the same building as a Boys and Girls Club. Parks and Recreation hope it’ll be finished by next Summer, just in time for kids to get involved when they’re out of school. “It’ll be a nice new facility that we’re going to be excited to open up,” said Flores.