Friday, May 24, 2013
While most Mainers were hunkered down indoors during last Friday's Blizzard of 2013, employees of the Bicycle Coalition of Maine were making their move: To Portland.
The Coalition - which recently announced the route for its other big endeavor for this year, BikeMaine - had spent its life until Feb. 8 in Augusta but now calls 34 Preble St. home.
According to Executive Director Nancy Grant, the foot traffic has already been encouraging as passersby stop in to chat or learn about the organization.
"There's huge visibility here, which is completely new," Grant said.
BCM's former space in Augusta required 24 steps to get to, which made it difficult for folks to just stop in and for employees to bike in. Most of BCM's employees live in the Portland area and Communications Director Brian Allenby has already taken to cycling to work.
The hope is to get a bike rack positioned outside in front of the space for visitors and employees to use.
According to Allenby, the new space, which was vacant for a couple years, will allow for BCM to host more bike/pedestrian organizations and events. There's even enough room for workshops, bike mechanics classes or safety classes to be held at the Preble Street location.
Allenby said that the move to Portland should actually help BCM serve more of the state. When based in Augusta, many of the employees spent too much time each day commuting to and from work. Now that their commutes are shorter, they will be more willing and able to spend time traveling to other communities during the work day.
Though the BCM staff hasn't had much time yet to decorate, BikeMaine Ride Director Kim True already has a map of the 2013 route in her office.
And in addition to the friendly BCM employees there are a few little bike-themed curios to see.
Stop in and check them out and also watch this blog for information on a BCM open house coming up soon.
Karen Beaudoin is an online editor for Maine Today Media and contributes two blogs to the company's websites.
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