Project Leads: Justin Wiley, Austin Andrews, Marcelo Felipe Garzo Montalvo, Chris McDermut
BicyCAL Mission: BicyCAL is a student founded and cooperatively run organization at UC Berkeley whose mission is to empower UCB students, faculty and staff to successfully integrate the bicycle into their daily lives. To that end we seek to provide a space where members of our community can learn how to maintain, operate and love their bicycles in an inclusive and safe place. We offer peer-to-peer bicycle repair and maintenance education in a radically positive environment.
TGIF Grant: $12,000 (additional $10,900 awarded in 2011 as part of the Campus Bicycle Initiative grant award)
2009 Grant Goals: Open a BicyCAL "storefront" on Lower Sproul that offers free bike maintenance and tutorials. Offer bike-maintenance based workshops, bike-literature, safety gear, and locks at the bicycle storefront. Promote Bike to Work Day and other bike-based events. Educate the campus about biking as a sustainable, healthy mode of transportation. Recruit student bike mechanics who will provide volunteer time. Collaborate with Green Bike Share, Yikes Bikes!, and the Campus Bicycle Committee. Expand the Green Bike Share program to include a fleet of 40 bikes and work with Yikes Bikes! to provide bike stations and mentorship programs to underfunded local schools. Assist UC Berkeley in achieving its Cal-CAP goals by getting more community members to switch to bikes as a mode of transportation. Target three UC Berkeley emissions sources: Faculty and Staff Commute (9%), Student Commute (2%), and Campus Fleet (1%) and potentially avert 3 metric tons of GHG emissions per year. Increase the number of campus cyclists by 250 new riders and avert use of 5,000 gallons of gasoline per year (assuming 20 gal/person).
2011 Grant Goals: Increase the immediate impact of the shop by hiring three student mechanic interns, who will help expand hours of operation and train additional volunteer mechanics. Increase the shop's tool inventory and add a repair-oriented sales inventory Increase shop visibility by hiring an operations/outreach, adding signage and banners in, developing print media for distribution, increasing web presence, and continuing outreach through peer-to-peer education. Ensure shop organizational and financial sustainability. The sale of high-demand repair items (such as cables, housing, and brake pads), as well as helmets, locks, lights and other accessories will allow the shop to generate a revenue stream.
TGIF Blog Posts about BicyCAL
During the course of the Spring 2010 semester, BicyCAL could be found twice-weekly at the North Gate and on Upper Sproul fixing bikes. The group provided both free maintenance and education for roughly 50-100 bicyclists. BicyCAL's greatest accomplishment was gaining access to a maintenance and educational HUB, to be located in the lower/upper Sproul breezeway. BicyCAL will be setting up a home base for bicycle maintenance and education that will be open 2 days a week starting the Fall 2010 semester. BicyCAL plans on submitting a reallocation for funds so it can put some of the grant money towards the space. BicyCAL's outreach and publicity has been conducted mainly through the repair days and its blog. BicyCAL also distributed materials at the 2010 Bike-to-Work Day and to local bicycle shops.
November 19, 2010 marked the opening of BicyCAL's free bicycle peer-to-peer maintenance and education shop, located on Sproul Plaza in the Cesar Chavez/MLK stairwell.
BicyCAL helps, on average, 7 customers per day of operation and during the 2010 fall and 2011 spring, BicyCAL held 31+ days of operations, assisting an estimated 220 bicyclists stay on the road. Relying solely on volunteer mechanics, BicyCAL was able to open three days a week, three hours per day during the spring semester. BicyCAL also launched a website and Facebook page.
Next Steps: The two biggest challenges faced by BicyCAL have been recruiting enough volunteer mechanics to provide steady shop services and publicizing BicyCAL's services to the UC Berkeley campus community. BicyCAL plans on tackling these issues in 2011-2012 with the help of a 2011 TGIF Grant, which will provide funding to hire shop staff, and collaboration with Campus Bicycle Initiative, which will help BicyCAL's education and outreach efforts.