Bikes at Work on Campus

Many people may not realize how much MSU departments and their staff use bikes to help make their work on & around campus more enjoyable, efficient and green.

In recent years MSU Bikes, Surplus and Recycling have all been utilizing bikes with large trailers to do even more work on campus that previously thought possible.  Their medium length Bikes at Work trailers allow them to haul up to 300- 600 lbs of cargo and with the help of electric-assist bikes staff don’t need super-human bicycling strength to haul those kinds of loads.

Here’s a photo gallery of Cayden Bunnell (formerly of Surplus & Recycling) at work w/ the rig on a nice fall day on campus (2015):

cayden-bike-trailer-video-screenshot
This video
highlights the work by one of the Surplus/ Recycling staff who was the inaugural bike-trailer worker bee to start regular rounds collecting compost material and delivering recycling related supplies.

 

MSU Bikes has used the same type of trailer to haul its recycling materials, signage in parades and other special events, mobile bike repair clinic equipment and many other purposes. Some photos below show you the variety of cargo we’ve hauled over the years.

This past summer the Bailey Greenhouse and Urban Farm students (part of the MSU RISE Program) began making pedal-powered deliveries of their vegetables around campus with a little help from MSU Surplus/ MSU Bikes.  This video shows their delivery bike-trailer in action.

For over three decades the Infrastructure Planning and Facilities department has had the largest fleets of work bikes on campus (23 in Aug. 2014) which are heavily utilized throughout the year for work trips that don’t require a full-sized motor vehicle.  Gus Gosselin, former Director of Building Services and current Senior Engineer with IPF and co-founder of the MSU Bike Project (which was the forerunner to the current MSU Bikes Service Center), was instrumental in building up that fleet and helping the modest bike get the respect it deserves alongside other wheeled transportation options for IPF workers.  He’s been riding his bike to meetings, lunches and other work trips around campus for many years carrying his helmet into meetings to strategically let others know that he rode a bike.  (This article gives more background on this history of bicycling within IPF).

bikeunitThere are other departments that also heavily utilize bicycles to help them with their daily work on campus. A couple dozen lease their bikes from MSU Bikes’ utilizing our fleet services for their staff use throughout the work day. The MSU Police Dept.’s Bicycle Unit has the next sizable fleet of bikes which help their team of bike patrol officers with a host of work from Community policing, routine traffic enforcement and other types of enforcement where a bicycle provides unique benefits (they’re quiet, fast and can go places motor vehicles can’t go).

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Author: Tim Potter

Sustainable Transportation Manager, MSU Bikes Service Center; member of the All University Traffic & Transportation Committee (http://auttc.msu.edu); founding member of MSU Bike Advisory Committee (https://msubikes.wordpress.com/volunteer-donate/msu-bac/); advocate for local & regional non-motorized transportation issues thru the Tri-Co. Bike Assn. Advocacy Committee (http://groups.google.com/group/tcatc); board member of the Ride of Silence (http://www.rideofsilence.org); year-round bicyclist of all sorts; photographer; soccer player; father of 3; married 30 yrs. to Hiromi, Japanese national (daughter of former Natl. Keirin Champion, Seiichi Nishiji); Christ follower.

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