Students Gearing Up for New Bike Rental and Repair Business
Loyola Neighborhood News: Lake Shore Campus - V3, I1
Launching August 21, 2011 will be a new and expanded version of a student-run free bike rental program once called The Borrow-A-Bike program.
The new business, ChainLinks, will be a subsidiary business to Loyola Limited, which is a growing Student Run Business Enterprise program for undergraduate students at Loyola.
In 2008, in collaboration with Chicago’s Department of Transportation and Active Transportation Alliance, Loyola made a commitment to a two-year program that supported the hiring of an alternative transportation intern. The intern’s role was to advocate for biking, walking, and transit use. Through this internship and collaboration with Loyola’s Bike Club, the Borrow-A-Bike program was created with the use of refurbished bikes and a generous donation from Bike and Roll Chicago.
After two years of a successful bike program, Loyola committed to supporting a one-year intern charged with finding sustainable solutions for keeping a program that encourages biking and the enhancement of campus-community culture. Spencer Schmid, a Loyola senior, was hired to replace Tony Giron and take Borrow-A-Bike to a permanent level of sustainability.
Schmid and his peers from Loyola Limited tested the viability of a full bike rental and repair business. In the spring, they presented a bike business proposal to Loyola’s administration.
The proposal was approved and ChainLinks will be launching this August in a new storefront space on Loyola’s Lake Shore campus. The bike inventory includes 100 specialized hybrid bikes purchased from Higher Gear and 29 Trek B-Cycles. The business will be fully operated by students and plans to offer repairs and rentals for students, faculty, and staff.
Schmid, president of ChainLinks, plans to offer safety workshops, group rides, and programming that encourages people to bike in the city.
“Not only is this business a huge step forward towards teaching students about the elements of starting and running a business,” said Schmid, “but it is also a huge step forward towards Loyola’s continued commitment to alternative forms of transportation.”
For more information on ChainLinks, visit the official website at http://www.loyolalimited.com/chainlinks/