Before this full-service station opened in June, Crown Heights had not had a bike shop for 20 years. And with the new wave of gentrifying residents, the need for quick transportation on Nostrand Avenue was greater than ever. But that’s not the type of crowd Brooklyn native Nechama Levy and local Joe Lawler aim to cater to. The owners of Bicycle Roots say they don’t want to change the neighborhood, but add to an already rich history. They do this by radically downplaying the “insider” culture of biking, with the goal of making it a more universally accessible mode of transportation. Rather than peddling Tour de France–ready machines with complicated gears and speeds, the bright, neatly organized shop features practical-minded items such as the extremely subway-convenient foldable Brompton bicycle and Yuba brand cargo bikes for families. Repairs are made by friendly mechanics with speedy turnaround.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on October 16, 2013