Cycling Heaven in Fredrikstad

Stikkord: Areal og transport, Gang- og sykkelveier, Fredrikstad

The cycle repair shop «Pedalen» in Fredrikstad is both a repair shop, shop, a stall for cycles and a taxi service. Everything’s prepared for green traffic in Fredrikstad.

The cycle repair shop «Pedalen» in Fredrikstad is both a repair shop, shop, a stall for cycles and a taxi service. Everything’s prepared for green traffic in Fredrikstad.

It started with cycle storage. In the cycle stall by the railway station the commuters can park their cycle safe and dry. Then, the service was expanded: Does your cycle need repair, small or large, it can be done while you’re at work. Those wanting a greener taxi-alternative can use the cycle taxi. Ten people in «Pedalen» are also working on a locally designed city bike.

The cycle repair shop «Pedalen» started as a collaboration between ROM Eiendom (ROM Property) and The Church City Mission. The idea was that «Pedalen» would be a place for those in need of job training. Today there are ten people working here. The Norwegian Directorate of Health has given financial support to this pilot project initiated by The Church City Mission.

The manager of «Pedalen», Rasmus Leiro, is well known in the cycling community. The Industrial Designer is also the author of «Mekkeboka» (The Tinkering Book), which consists of tips and advice on how to repair and maintain your cycle. This book is printed in several editions and is considered as the «cycler’s bible».

Leiro is interested in the bicycle as means of transport, and that solutions correspond to the human needs of today. Recently he became mentor for the students in the Industrial Design Studies at Østfold University College. The chosen assignment is to design and produce a so called «long tail» cycle, a cycle suitable for transporting large quantities of goods or for transporting more than one child.

Even though Fredrikstad is a relatively small city, there’s nothing preventing us from importing international cycling trends, Leiro says. He promises to do whatever he can to have the Fredrikstad city bike ready for the cycling season.

«Pedalen» repair shop is situated by Fredrikstad railway station. The shop contains a cycle stall, a repair shop, a rental service and a shop selling cycles and cycling  equipment.

«Pedalen», run by The Church City Mission, also does job training. Courses in repairing cycles are held by manager and cycling enthusiast Rasmus Leiro.

«Pedalen» offers both inhabitants and visitors the opportunity to be transported by cycle taxi. This phenomenon is called a Fredrikshaw, and has recieved international attention.