Warm weather and expensive gas prices are bringing bicycles out of sheds across the nation. It seems only logical to provide bicyclists with the 24-hour roadside assistance available to motor vehicle drivers. Introducing: Dr. Trek Stop, a self-service AAA for your bike.
Last month, Machinery Row Bicycles and Trek Bicycle Corporation‘s Advanced Concept Group partnered together to bring bicyclists a vending machine that will pump up your tires, not your waistline. The Trek Stop prototype is currently set up outside the Madison, Wisconsin store ready for use by bicyclers and interested by-standers. People using the nearby bicycle path along Lake Monona can ride by anytime, even after store hours. The convenient bike doctor in a box is packed with goodies unlike the usual Starburst packs and Snickers candy bars.
Customers can expect to find tools needed for minor repairs, bike accessories, and snacks. Spare tubes, CO2 cartridges, locks, chain lubricants, headlights, area maps and frame pumps are just some of the bike accessories being sold. The design includes a rack to place the bike on while fixing. Unsure of how to fix a flat tire? No worries. A video explaining the necessary steps plays on a screen. Drinks and food for the rider are also available. “This is the first of its type anywhere,” says Michael Hammond, Trek’s senior industrial designer in an article taken from the Wisconsin State Journal. “We want to build the infrastructure for bicyclists beyond paths and lanes. We want to remove barriers and eliminate worries for bicycle commuters. So far, the response has been huge.”
And why wouldn’t it be? The Trek Shop combines two aspects popular with people of any age: vending machines and bikes. There is an unexplainable excitement that comes with putting change into a slot, watching the chosen item fall, and opening the hinged door to claim your price. Aside from the inherent joy of vending machines, these 24-hour shops will prove useful to bicyclists stranded on paths miles from repair shops. If the prototype outside Machinery Row Bicycles remains busy, you might see these stations popping up on local bike paths.
By Kathryn Kondracki for Next American City.