West Virginia Wesleyan College is a private college in WV; it is also my alma mater. One thing I was able to do for the campus before I graduated was getting a 20-bike bike rack for two residence halls. It wasn’t much, but it was all I could do and it was put to good use. Sadly, I am not satisfied with the amount of bike racks on campus for reasons highly visible all over. All around the residence halls, and academic buildings, you will see bikes locked up to handrails on the breezeways, on benches and light poles, and even just right outside a classroom. If there were more bike racks, there would be less of a clutter of bikes all over the place. One last reason for more bike racks is due to three bicycles being stolen even after being properly locked up; two of them belonging to friends.
Well, I was bored this weekend, and decided to take a little bit of action; I had some left over lumber supplies from a previous project, wanted to make a bike rack out of these discarded pieces. This project took me two hours, and no money. The screws were salvaged from a demolished DIY arcade cabinet I created in 2005, and became tired of.
Here are the results:
The best place to put this bike rack was at the library. There were several times I locked my bike, or there was someone else’s bike chained to a handrail on the steps leading to the entryway of the building. It was an ostentatious gesture doing this, but there was no where else to put your bike while studying there. After cleaning up my sawdust mess, and putting everything back up, it was 8:00pm; darkness was falling. I drove up to the library with the rack and a little sign in the bed of the truck and carried it to the steps of the library, I felt like a ninja or some kind of crazy advocacy person… (think Greenpeace) I placed my little promotional sign in the most visible area, as close to the bike rack as possible. I also found a spot for the wooden bike rack that was out-of-the-way, but still noticable and available to be used. I had to face one side of the rack facing the grass, instead of both sides on the sidewalk since the placement of bikes on both sides while on the pavement would have taken up too much space.
While this kind of approach to getting what you want is nowhere near as diplomatic as actually going to the faculty of the college or writing a formal letter, it does create a little bit of publicity for an issue on campus. I’m hoping for the best with this, but if nothing happens… I’m only out two hours of my time and some wood scraps~