Written by: Brad Davis, Senior Planner, Alta Planning + Design

Bike shops are more than just a business.

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Wednesday night, my wife and I were having dinner and suddenly noticed multiple police cars, fire trucks and ambulances speeding up Peachtree Road.  I said, “Man, it must be a really bad accident.”  We then went back to our conversation.

The next morning I woke up to news that Peachtree Bikes, my neighborhood bike shop that is just up the street, had been completely destroyed by a fire.  All the emergency vehicles were heading to the scene the night before.  I was heartbroken.

Peachtree Bikes is an awesome shop.  I am there frequently picking up items for my bike, getting something fixed by one of the mechanics or on two occasions buying a new bike.  The shop is also where group rides leave from several times a week.  The shop sponsors a bike racing team and they support bike events throughout the year.  They provide a lot for the community.

Peachtree Bikes is more than just a business.  They are a part of the community and cycling culture in Atlanta.  That is the reason why some folks were crying last night when they heard the news and saw what was happening.

So what was Peachtree Bike’s first response?  It was letting people know via Facebook that their first priority was replacing the bikes dropped off for repair.  So awesome.

Bike shops are more than just businesses.  They are community hubs and the backbone of the cycling movement, particularly here in the US.  They make it possible for more and more people to ride.

Bike shops provide a lot for communities, but they need love and support too.  If your bike shop is awesome, the next time you are there tip the mechanic, get them a six pack or just say thank you.  Better yet, go buy something at the bike shop.  They’ll appreciate that too.  And it will all help them continue to be the neighborhood business we all need and love.