We're hiring a Bike Mechanic/ Community-Builder!

As part of the Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) program, this role will span 9 weeks with 30 hours per week. There’s a flexible start date, with the earliest being May 13th and the latest being June 3rd. The pay will be $15/ hour. The candidate must be between 15 and 30 years old.

Overview:

London Cycle Link (LCL) is a small but growing non-profit organization that is dedicated to making cycling a natural choice for every Londoner. We imagine a London where bikes are commonplace, and everyone feels confident riding. We work to achieve this vision through advocacy, education, research, and community-building. A major component of LCL’s work is the operation of Squeaky Wheel Bike Co-op (SWBC), which is a member-supported DIY bike shop that facilitates cycling education and empowerment. SWBC is operated by a team of volunteers and our executive director.

We are now searching for a self-motivated, diligent, and enthusiastic person to join the LCL team for the summer! Our summer employee is intended to provide more dedicated support to the shop operations (details outlined below) during the busiest part of bike season (although, we tend to think every season could be bike season)! Through this position, a motivated candidate will have opportunity to build their technical/ mechanical, client service, digital marketing, and team leadership skills. The successful candidate will work closely with our executive director and volunteer team to make a significant contribution to our community impact.

Through their positive attitude, confidence in cycling, and eagerness to learn, our summer employee will directly help get more Londoners on bikes!

Duties:

Support the Squeaky Wheel Bike Co-op and its parent organization, London Cycle Link, in daily activities. This will consist of two main categories of work: supporting the Co-op, and supporting the organization as a whole.

Squeaky Wheel Bike Co-op Responsibilities:

  • Assist and educate SWBC members in bike maintenance

  • Collaborate with volunteers and the Executive Director (ED) to manage the shop inventory, merchandising, sales/ transactions, etc

  • Provide knowledgeable and friendly customer service to all patrons, including folks who are brand-new to the organization

  • With the support of volunteers and ED, problem solve any issues that may arise in the bike shop

  • Build and repair donated bicycles to be distributed through our Bikes for Newcomers program or sold as affordable transportation.

  • Support the ED in volunteer coordination and scheduling for SWBC

London Cycle Link Responsibilities:

  • Assist in the design, logistics, delivery, and promotion of cycling workshops and cycling advocacy events.

  • Contribute to the organization’s digital marketing/ storytelling. Capture the “life” of the bike shop and events and share publicly through social media, blogs, graphic design/ creation of promo materials, etc.

  • Support the ED with other administrative tasks such as responding to emails/public inquiries, screening volunteer applications, managing documents, writing grants, etc.

  • Imagine and implement new ways to promote cycling in London.

Requirements:

  • Experience with bicycle maintenance and mechanics

  • Experience in event planning and support

  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills

  • Demonstrated interest in teaching and advocacy

  • Demonstrated capacity for team leadership

  • Comfortable cycling in the city

  • Enthusiastic and friendly

  • Self-motivated

  • Diligent time-management and organization

  • Eager to learn

  • Dependable

  • Capacity for creative problem solving

Assets:

  • Familiarity with major topics in cycling advocacy

  • Experience in digital storytelling/ marketing/ promotions

  • Experience in cycling education

  • Retail service experience

Qualified individuals should email their cover letter and resume to Daniel Hall (director@londoncyclelink.ca) no later than Thursday May 9th with the subject line “Summer Job Application”.

London Cycle Link strives for equal opportunity in employment. We welcome applications from persons of diverse backgrounds. Accommodation will be provided in all parts of the hiring process as required by AODA. If you require accommodations, please let us know of your needs in advance. We sincerely thank all candidates for their interest; however, only those selected for an interview will be notified. No phone calls please.

Daniel HallComment
BRT is the best option for cyclists

Dear City Council,

I am writing on behalf of London Cycle Link, a non-profit representing hundreds of Londoners who cycle and desire a more bike-friendly city.

After reviewing the 19 projects eligible for provincial and federal infrastructure funding, the best projects for moving cycling forward in London are the 5 core BRT projects. The original BRT plan incorporates important cycling connections and offers a reliable, frequent, and fast transit alternative when cycling is not possible.

There are three transformational cycling improvements that are part of the north connection and Wellington Road Gateway projects. The first is proper cycling infrastructure across University bridge. Earlier this year when the bridge was closed to vehicular traffic, the bridge was safer for cyclists and encouraged many people to choose to ride to campus. This will also be the case with protected bike lanes on a widened University Bridge. Second, the north connection extends cycling facilities from Western University to Masonville. This will offer another great option for North London residents to get to campus and for students and faculty to get to Masonville. Finally, the third cycling improvement is Wellington Road between Base Line and Bradley. Having a safe cycling connection here will make it possible to ride to Victoria Hospital from the south, and for many people to reach the retail destinations along Wellington Road. All three of these improvements will be transformational for encouraging more people to bike in London.

Further to improved cycling projects, having reliable, fast, and frequent transit in London will allow more people to live a multi-modal lifestyle. There are many people who want to cycle when the weather is nice and the destination can be accessed safely; however, there are many other trips that may need to be completed using a different mode of transportation. A rapid transit system will benefit trips along the corridor and any transit trip that can use the corridor for part of the trip. A London with good cycling infrastructure and a reliable and frequent transit system is much more attractive to help Londoners leave their car at home. This will increase the number of cyclists dramatically.

Please proceed with the 5 projects that comprise the original BRT plan. This is the best plan for a vibrant, healthy, accessible London and the best plan on the table for cycling.

Sincerely,

Daniel Hall

Executive Director

Daniel HallComment
Lessons Learned from Bikes on Dundas

On Tuesday, March 5th, London City Council voted almost unanimously to endorse the staff recommendation for protected bike lanes on Dundas between downtown and Old East Village with a hybrid/couplet model through the heart of Old East (westbound on Queens and eastbound on Dundas).


Although the hybrid portion is not the best solution, the protected bike lane as a whole represents a giant leap forward for attracting more people on bikes, for improving perceived and actual safety, and for creating a more vibrant Old East Village and Downtown.


There are many things we can learn from the process and decision that can inform our future work:


  1. Advocacy works - This may seem counterintuitive since we didn’t get the full solution we wanted, but if we look back to the first public meeting, many business owners didn’t want bike lanes on Dundas at all. Having us present and vocal at the public meetings to declare the importance of locating good cycling infrastructure close to retail and cultural destinations gave city staff the support they needed to make it a reality.

  2. Building positive relationships early on is critical - Since the precise solution we advocated for was only detailed after both public meetings had been held, it was harder to garner support from the local city councillor and BIA. Having as many businesses, councillors, and community leaders as possible in support before it comes to a council decision will give us a much better chance of success.

  3. Communicate clear messaging and factual information widely - Misinformation or confusion around what is being proposed is likely; the status quo is always the easiest path forward because it is known and accepted. It’s up to us as advocates to communicate the benefits, illustrate the vision, demonstrate how it will affect stakeholders, and synthesize it all into a cohesive message.

  4. We need a team of people to strategize and support the advocacy process - Advocacy is dynamic and strategizing in real-time is important. We need many voices to make good decisions and be heard. The community of people supporting Bikes on Dundas could be a great start for a member-based advocacy team for future projects.

  5. We have support - There are many people in London who want to see better infrastructure for people on bikes. Through the Bikes on Dundas process we heard support for our advocacy from citizens, business owners, politicians and other community organizations. Let’s amplify those voices!


Although Council has made their decision, and that is more or less final, there is still much work to be done to ensure the project achieves its goals of attracting more people to cycle and improve safety. Here are a few things we need to do in the coming months:


  1. Count the number of cyclists on Queens, Dundas, and King this spring/ summer so we have a baseline to compare to. This will help document the progress that is made.

  2. Create a wish list of any improvements we feel are necessary to city staff’s design and advocate for these.

  3. Ensure  an increased cycling budget for the infrastructure that’s not on Dundas between Adelaide and Ontario (covered by a full road reconstruction project). Early estimates from staff were in the $2 million range, which would be the equivalent of 3 years of the current cycling budget.

  4. Partner with local businesses to help them understand the needs and wants of cyclists and ask how people on bikes can support them (buy more!).


This was a great project for London Cycle Link to undertake, and it was by no means a loss. Changing London from a car-centric city to one that accepts and supports cycling as a viable alternative is difficult and important work.


Thank you to everyone who has supported Bikes on Dundas so far.  We look forward to following this project through to its best end, and to using what we’ve learned in this process to work towards better, safer, smarter cycling infrastructure as we ride on!