CSUN Bike Collective encourages alternative transportation

By Bob Garcia
April 18th, 2013
Section: Features – Photos – Student Spotlight

Carlos Sapon (left), 18, history major and Esteban Rivas, 25, political science major are a part of CSUN Bike Collective. A.S. provides the club with $700 so that they can have weekly bike clinics and fix CSUN students bikes for free. Photo credit: John Saringo-Rodriguez / Daily Sundial

During his senior year at Downtown Magnet High School in 2009, David De La Cruz decided to pick up cycling on his own.

And from time to time when his bike needed maintenance he would repair it on his own.

When he arrived at CSUN the following year, he wanted to get involved in something that fulfilled his interest in cycling. He stumbled upon the Bicycle Club at CSUN.

“I found these folks on campus that were advocating for cycling, safer cycling, urban planning within cycling, and sustainability,” De La Cruz said. “The group’s focus consisted of most of my interests.”

The Bicycle Club, with an informal name change to the Bike Collective in the fall of 2010, is an on-campus community of CSUN student cyclists whose sole mission, according to the club website, is “to provide mechanical resources, safety information, advocacy for and the establishment of a communal base for those who commute, and get across campus via bicycles.”

The club’s emphasis is empowering commuters to take an alternative and sustainable mode of transportation to CSUN.

The Bike Collective holds weekly on-campus bicycle clinics, where members provide free fixes. The group also hosts local bicycle rides and tours, attends bicycle conferences, events and meetings. It also advocates the planning and designing of bicycle infrastructures on the campus.

At the bike clinics, the most common fixes are chain or brake problems. The fixes are voluntary work provided by the bike collective members. The tools used by its members have been donated or purchased through Associated Students funding that provides money to recognized chartered clubs on campus. Throughout the course of the last two years the bike collective has increased its equipment stock significantly according to De La Cruz.

Members of the Bike Collective hold equal positions, and the club has a communal decision-making process for event planning and club activities.

Students can become a member of the organization by attending meetings and events, and participating in club activities is the key to membership. Meetings are held to discuss the goals of the university organization. Events are held for students to learn about cycling, bike repair tips and the Northridge community.

Madison Carroll, a CSUN graduate student in kinesiology, has been a member of the group for more than a year. She said the club has provided her with the opportunity to meet great people who have a passion for bicycles.

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